The reduction of our atmospheric discharges, and particularly GHGs, is an integral part of our energy and environmental management systems, so our approach is based on an accurate, real and transparent assessment of the current situation. To achieve an ambitious target, driven by our BE POSITIF programme: carbon neutrality initially by the end of 2020 and the creation of environmental value by the end of 2025.
Thus the atmospheric releases linked to Teréga’s activities are chiefly of two kinds:
greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide-CO2; methane-CH4);
atmospheric pollutants from the burning of gas (sulphur dioxide-SOx; nitrogen oxides-NOx; volatile organic compounds excluding methane).
According to readings taken by approved external organisations, emissions of atmospheric pollutants (NOx, SOx etc.) arising from the burning of gas account for a very small amount.
As for GHGs, we have developed accurate tracking, illustrated by our Carbon Audit. One of its challenges is to allow us to “meter well” so that we can act better and set accurate, quantifiable targets. That Carbon Audit enables us to perform monitoring of our indicators in accordance with the ISO 14001 and 50001 standards, to measure the impact of our improvement actions and to meet our regulatory requirements. Our approach has enabled us to shine a light on our main emissions: combustion, diffuse losses and venting. And thus our priority areas for action in terms of reducing emissions.
It implies a balance between carbon emissions and the absorption of carbon from the atmosphere in carbon sinks. To achieve net zero emissions, all GHG emissions worldwide should be compensated by carbon sequestration. A carbon sink is defined as any system absorbing more carbon than it emits. The main natural carbon sinks are the ground, forests and oceans. It is estimated they can eliminate between 9.5 and 11 gigatonnes (GT) CO2 per year. We publish an audit of our GHG emissions every four years.
The latest of these is available from www.bilans-ges.ademe.fr
GHG emissions per unit of gas transported between 2012 and 2019
GHG emissions since 2015
emissions associated with maintenance venting between 2012 and 2020
methane emissions by 2024
As a responsible industrial actor, we have displayed our desire to meet the ambitions set out in COP21, aiming at a reduction of at least 40% in GHGs by 2050. Our actions illustrate our ability to mobilise, to innovate in how we practise our activities, and yet still uphold the same level of service.
To combat the atmospheric emissions associated with our activities, we have implemented several initiatives:
Optimisation of our compression resources
The compression equipment we use has evolved with a move to electric compressors which do not use gas and release less gas.
We have also developed a digital solution to limit emissions across our compression equipment. The OPTIMUS software has allowed real-time optimisation of our machinery, including the CO2 factor in technical solution optimisation.
Reducing emissions associated with decompression across transport infrastructures
Where “venting” is concerned, a number of solutions are being studied, including the introduction of auxiliary compressors capable of recovering the gas emitted and reinjecting it into the grid. Two fixed recompression units are currently being installed at Lussagnet, and in 2020 we launched a specific solution for work on the transport grid: MOBILE COMP, an articulated lorry fitted with a mobile compressor.
Currently, during transport maintenance works, several tens of tonnes of CO2e (CO2 equivalent) are recovered every year through recompression.
Another solution has been introduced for situations where recompression is not possible. This is, in principle, a flare, allowing the methane to be burnt off, thus reducing its global warming potential from 34 to… 1 (the same as CO2).
Diffuse loss reduction
We have identified the diffuse losses generated at plants under normal operation as a priority challenge for reducing emissions. Our next priority will therefore be to introduce solutions to reduce those diffuse losses, even though preventive actions have already allowed some reductions.
Methanation: why not recycle CO2?
As part of our proactive approach, we are also preparing solutions for tomorrow’s world. This means we are involved in a number of research projects looking at methanation. This process allows synthetic methane to be produced from hydrogen and CO2. The development of this sector, supported by Teréga, will allow the injection of synthetic methane into our grid, at the same time reducing CO2 emissions, as they will be recycled and re-used.
To reduce polluting emissions due to road traffic, Teréga has drawn up a Mobility Plan, submitted to Pau Béarn Mobilité, which defines a set of measures to optimise the efficiency of employee travel. Since 2018 we have been engaged in the progressive overhaul of our vehicle fleet. The aim is to generalise the rollout of NGV (Natural Gas for Vehicles) technology, especially as it generates up to 25% less CO2 and no fine particulates. As a result, several hundred vehicles will be “switched” to NGV, depending on network coverage and our travel requirements. On some of our sites we have chosen to construct our own private NGV stations from 2021.
In addition, that desire in Teréga can also be seen in our support for industrial customers and local authorities: since 2019 we have been developing a commercial offer allowing our existing industrial customers and/or local authorities to fuel their vehicle fleets with NGV and/or to provide a NGV station for private individuals.