EPA: Dallas-based Luminant Produces a Hell of A Lot of Greenhouse Gas, And So Does Fracking

Categories: Environment

weatherford gas well.jpg
ZUMA Ralph Lauer/ZUMAPRESS.com
The Environmental Protection Agency -- that scourge of freedom-loving Texans -- just released a nifty little interactive greenhouse-gas database that will almost certainly threaten your liberty, the free market and the Second Amendment, somehow.

For starters, the data it compiled indicates Dallas-based electricity generator Luminant plays second fiddle to only one other utility in America when it comes to sheer volume. Its Martin Lake plant due east of here is the third most prolific emitter of greenhouse gases. Some 18.5 million metric tons of carbon-dioxide equivalent in 2011, to be exact. The Monticello plant in Mount Pleasant gets a participation medal for its 13 million tons.

More interesting, though, were the data pertaining to greenhouse gas emissions associated with oil and gas production. This is the first time the agency has included the category in its inventory, and, as it turns out, it's the second biggest source of greenhouse gas in the country.

The emissions figures, which cover the entire life-cycle of oil and gas, from production at the wellhead to transmission through gathering lines and main lines, don't seem like much until you start adding up all the facilities in North Texas' Barnett Shale: WPX Energy's facility near Trophy Club, which churned out the equivalent of 192,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide 2011; Devon Energy's facility near Lake Ray Roberts chipped in 615,000 metric tons, just to name a couple.

This will almost certainly enter the debate over natural gas' greenhouse contributions. As a low-carbon form of energy, some say it's the way forward, the bridge fuel between oil and renewable energy. A few researchers have thrown cold buckets of water on the idea because the greenhouse gases released throughout the process may negate whatever climate benefit natural gas holds.

It's a problem that can largely be engineered away by building equipment that minimizes leakages, but that hasn't happened yet.

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10 comments
scottindallas
scottindallas topcommenter

of course what keeps those dirty coal plants running, is the money we've wasted on windfarms, only to get intermittent generation of 10% on average.  For what we've spent, we could've shelved all the old dirty coal plants with new cleaner NG plants.  So, this issue isn't so simple, and jumping to every "green" initiative isn't the wisest course of action. 

schermbeck
schermbeck

Since they're very proud of their efforts to reduce Greenhouse Gas pollution at Dallas City Hall, perhaps someone there would like to browse this inventory to estimate how much more GHG pollution a large gas refinery would release annually. Or not. 

j.walter.miller
j.walter.miller

The wheels are off of man made climate change, sweets.  Even the UN admits that the average temps have only climbed by .28 degrees in the last 12 years.  1/5th of what the alarmists had been shouting from the roof tops.  Little propaganda pieces like this aren't going to change the fact that man made climate change has been absolutely discredited.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@j.walter.miller 

You're so right. There's absolutely no good reason to build leakproof equipment since you don't believe that climate change has been exacerbated by human activity.


Glad we got that settled, finally.

MattL11
MattL11

@j.walter.miller "Absolutely discredited" is a pretty strong term. Perhaps you should think twice before using it regarding a view that is so widely held by people who actually know what they're talking about. 

ruddski
ruddski

@Daniel 

No, I take you for angry and emotionally charged over a climate phenomenon that not even a staunch liberal can control.

Daniel
Daniel

@ruddski @MattL11 @j.walter.miller 

Precisely. Virtually every credible climatologist in the international scientific community now asserts unequivocally that global warming is not a real phenomenon. Al Gore is the lone holdout, aside from a couple of outlier commies (as we all know, environmentalism is essentially communist in nature).


Hey, I listen to my Rush Limbaugh -- what'd you take me for, ignorant?

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