Airborne methane surveys pay for themselves: An economic case study of increased revenue from emissions control

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Forrest Johnson, Andrew Wlazlo, Ryan Keys, Viren Desai, Erin B. Wetherley, Ryan Calvert, Elena S.F. Berman


We present an economic analysis of an emissions monitoring and capture program for a mid-sized Permian Basin operator, Triple Crown Resources (“Triple Crown”). Data from this campaign was gathered using repeat airborne surveys provided by Kairos Aerospace (“Kairos”). Key findings include:
- The total volume of detected emissions from Triple Crown operations decreased by 70% from the first to the second survey.
- Captured gas revenue in the first month was approximately $139,000 and paid for the full cost of the first campaign (including survey, follow-up inspection, and repair) within 5 days.
-Analysis of emissions detected from a range of anonymized Permian Basin operators show that a mid-sized operator with a median emissions profile could expect a campaign to pay back in 16.8 days.
-Gas samples collected from various points across Triple Crown’s operation showed significant variation in gas value, with tank vapor gas priced as high as $22/MCF.
- Kairos survey technology was found to be an effective and highly competitive option for carbon reduction relative to wind, solar, and LED lighting, achieving a cost of $0.54 for every one tonne of CO2e eliminated.



Environmental Monitoring, Natural Resource Economics, Oil, Gas, and Energy, Remote Sensing


Emissions reduction, Payback, Airborne survey, ESG, Carbon liability


Published: 2021-07-15 08:23


CC0 1.0 Universal - Public Domain Dedication