The World Bank has said that ten countries, including Nigeria, account for 75 percent of global gas flaring.
The other countries include Russia, Iraq, Iran, the United States, Venezuela, Algeria, Mexico, Libya, and China. This was disclosed in the 2022 Global Gas Flaring Tracker Report published on Thursday on the bank’s website.
According to the United States-based lender, the 10 countries also account for 50 percent of global oil production.
The report read in part, “In 2021, the top 10 flaring countries (on an absolute volume basis) accounted for 75 per cent of all gas flaring and 50 percent of global oil production.
“Seven of the top 10 flaring countries have held this position consistently for the last 10 years: Russia, Iraq, Iran, the United States, Venezuela, Algeria, and Nigeria. The remaining three; Mexico, Libya, and China, have shown significant flaring increases in recent years.
“When we consider flaring intensity, fragile, conflict-affected, and insecure countries, such as Venezuela, Syria, and Yemen are among the worst performers, flaring more gas per barrel of oil produced than any other country. The intensity perspective also suggests there are opportunities to improve flaring performance in oil-producing countries such as Algeria, the Republic of the Congo, Gabon, and Turkmenistan.”
The report further said that Nigeria and four others had committed to the World Bank’s Zero Routine Flaring by 2030, adding that only the US has improved successfully on gas flaring intensity.
“Considering again the top 10 flaring countries on a volume basis, Russia, Iraq, the United States, Nigeria, and Mexico have all committed to the World Bank’s Zero Routine Flaring by 2030 Initiative, which commits governments and companies to (a) not routinely flare gas in any new oil field development, and (b) to end routine flaring in existing oil fields as soon as possible and no later than 2030. However, over the past decade, only the United States has successfully improved the flaring intensity of its oil production,” the report added.
The report also said that although Nigeria made significant progress in flare reduction over the years, there has been an increase in flaring intensity as oil production drops over the past decade.
According to the report, Nigeria is ranked seventh among the top 10 gas flaring countries, with a 10 per cent increase in flaring intensity between 2012 and 2021.
In the foreword to the report, the Programme Manager, Global Gas Flaring Reduction Partnership, World Bank, Zubin Bamji, said that about 144 billion cubic meters of gas were unnecessarily flared in 2021 globally
He said, “In 2021, 144 billion cubic meters of gas was needlessly flared at upstream oil and gas facilities across the globe. We estimate that this gas flaring resulted in approximately 400 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions globally last year. Ending this polluting practice must be central to decarbonization efforts.
“Not only could the gas wasted displace dirtier fuels and increase energy access in some of the world’s poorest countries, but by utilizing the gas that is currently being flared, the world could make significant progress towards much-needed energy security.”