Researchers say this is the first time gas has been detected from space off an offshore platform.
The findings were announced by the agency last week after the study was published in the “Environmental Science and Technology Letters”.
Plums found on “Zaap-C” oil-gas production platform off the coast of Campeche – one of the main oil-producing fields. Mexico. (See picture at the beginning of the report).
According to scientists, the platform released large amounts of methane for 17 days. In total, about 40,000 tons of gas – the main one of the greenhouse effect – was released into the atmosphere in December 2021.
From a lengthy provisional analysis, the researchers concluded that this is the single largest possible emission of this magnitude after the start of flammable activity on the platform.
Other methane leak detections have already been made via satellite data, from agricultural production to pipelines, oil wells, fossil fuel treatment plants and landfills.
“The results show how satellites can detect methane plumes from offshore infrastructure,” said Luis Guanter, of the Polytechnic University of Valencia.
“This represents a breakthrough in monitoring industrial methane emissions from space, as it opens the door to systematic monitoring of emissions from offshore platforms,” he added.
According to the ESA, leakage from offshore installations represents about 30% of the world’s methane production, which is most responsible for the greenhouse effect.
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