Our reputation, built on our core values to collaborate, take ownership, be bold and deliver results, enables us to maintain the trust of our stakeholders and to generate long-term value in our business. To achieve this, we aim to continually evaluate the impact of our operations on the people living in our communities and have a long-standing commitment to harnessing innovation to lessen that impact on both people and the environment.
Compliance is embedded in our corporate values, and we strive for continuous improvement of environmental performance to achieve that goal.
Our Environmental Management Standard guides our business units in identifying environmental risks relevant to our operations. To mitigate operational environmental impacts, we’ve developed sound practices for local and regional management of emissions, water, waste and sensitive habitats. These practices include:
- Designing and constructing facilities that are intended to comply with existing, applicable regulations.
- Identifying and installing, where feasible, solutions to reduce air emissions and waste, reduce fresh water use and mitigate spill potential.
- Vetting waste disposal facilities prior to use to minimize negative outcomes, such as induced seismicity or mishandling of waste.
- Tracking environmental performance and reporting data and management practices to internal and external stakeholders.
- Conducting appropriate due diligence before major acquisitions to determine potential environmental issues or liabilities.
To align with stakeholder interest and climate-guidance frameworks, we have expanded disclosures related to our methane and air emissions. In addition, the Climate Change section of this Sustainability Report is aligned with the format recommended by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).
Innovating to Minimize Environmental Impact
We acknowledge our role in the industry’s dual challenge – providing affordable, reliable energy to meet growing global demand while minimizing environmental impacts of exploration, production and energy use.
Although we firmly believe that oil and gas development will remain crucial to the world economy for the foreseeable future and an integral part of any future energy transition, we recognize the increasing interest of our stakeholders on the potential impacts of climate-related factors on Marathon Oil. We’re committed to sustainably deliver the energy the world needs, in a way that fosters long-term value creation. The measures we've taken include using pipelines as a low-carbon transport for our products and waste and implementing new technologies to reduce air emissions and fresh water use.
A Priority from the Top Down
Our sustainability efforts inform our risk management processes and our business strategy. The executive vice president of Operations has overall leadership accountability for our environmental function. Oversight is provided by the Health, Environmental, Safety and Corporate Responsibility (HES&CR) Committee of the board of directors, which meets at least twice per year. In addition, all directors bring experience and understanding of industry regulatory issues to their board role. For additional information see the Sustainability Oversight section.
Our Responsible Operations Management System (ROMS) consists of policies, procedures and guidelines designed to reduce health, environmental and safety risks, comply with regulations, and drive performance improvement in key identified metrics.
Highlights of our environmental management and performance in 2020 include1:
- Reduced 2020 GHG emissions intensity by approximately 26% relative to 2019 and established a 2021 reduction target of more than 30% relative to 2019, which was added to the executive compensation short-term incentive (STI) scorecard.
- Announced a goal for 2025 to reduce GHG intensity by more than 50% relative to a 2019 baseline. We identified multiple operational and design solutions to achieve this goal, including but not limited to continued replacement of instrument gas pneumatic controllers with lower or non-emitting technologies, connecting additional sites to utility power where feasible, minimizing flaring and investing in innovative nature-based solutions for carbon storage.
- Improved annual gas capture for 2020 to 97%, with the last two quarters of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021 meeting or exceeding 98%.
- Increased low carbon transport of produced water by 20% in 2020, to a total of approximately 60%, utilizing Marathon Oil-owned pipelines and midstream transportation providers.
- Reduced the number of spill incidents exceeding one barrel outside of containment by approximately 10%.
- Actively participated in The Environmental Partnership, Texas Methane and Flaring Coalition, New Mexico Produced Water Consortium and API and AXPC efforts to share best practices, create uniform metrics and refine definitions to contribute to overall improvement in the industry’s environmental performance.
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