Emissions Management Committee
In 2020 we reinforced this commitment, aiming for reductions of GHG emissions intensity by 30% by 2021 and more than 50% by 2025 compared to a 2019 baseline. We're making notable progress, achieving a 2020 GHG emissions intensity reduction of approximately 26%, and improving our total gas capture to 98.5% in the fourth quarter of 2020.
However, we recognize that fulfilling this goal requires action, continuous attention and the application of innovative solutions. In 2019, we formed an Emissions Management Committee (EMC), tasked with evaluating and prioritizing emissions reductions strategies and technologies at an enterprise level. In early 2021, we earmarked $100 million over a five-year period for emission reduction projects within our 2021-2025 benchmark maintenance scenario.
The operations-focused EMC identifies potential projects based on cost-effectiveness, feasibility and expected emissions reductions. In doing so, they are assembling an invaluable resource – a prioritized list of emission reduction opportunities to continue to optimize and enhance our operations to reach our target. This structured approach to our emissions reduction pathway also allows us to quickly scale successful pilot projects by sharing these achievements across the organization.
The EMC’s mission goes well beyond “low-hanging fruit,” exploring innovative strategies through multiple angles. Our goal is to eliminate or reduce our emissions first, offset and store second.
Marathon Oil has initiated the following projects as initial steps to achieve our GHG emissions reductions goals:
- Conversion of existing field gas pneumatic actuated controllers to instrument air or electric-action, permanently reducing methane emissions. Future devices installed on Marathon Oil-owned equipment will be instrument air or electric-action.
- Purchase of renewable energy credits (RECs) to fully offset 2021 Scope 2 emissions created from purchased electricity use.
- Improved gas capture.
- Optimization of compression associated with gas lift.
One example of a beneficial collaboration is our support for soil carbon sequestration by funding a credit development project with Grassroots Carbon, formerly Soil Value Exchange. The organization is focused on unlocking the massive carbon storage potential of sustainably grazed pasture and rangelands, which cover over one third of the U.S. and represent an important ecosystem. Marathon Oil’s purchase of verified agricultural soil carbon storage credits through Grassroots Carbon will directly benefit U.S. ranchers who practice regenerative grazing techniques that draw carbon from the atmosphere and restore soil health. This method has the additional benefits of preserving or improving local biodiversity, the soil’s water retention in arid regions, and the quality of water in the watersheds where it’s utilized.
Marathon Oil is interested in using high-quality nature-based carbon credits where they make sense. The Grassroots Carbon credits will be certified under the new BCarbon standard, a scalable soil carbon storage standard designed to work for landowners and carbon storage buyers. In order to deliver soil carbon storage credits of the highest quality, Grassroots Carbon will utilize an internationally-recognized soil measurement methodology as well as BCarbon’s independent verification and certification requirements.
We’ll continue to dedicate our effort and resources to the “dual challenge” of meeting energy demands while also minimizing the environmental impacts of exploration, production and energy use.
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