Business News of 2014-06-10

EPA defends permit granted Tullow Oil to flare gas

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has defended the permit granted Tullow Oil to flare gas on the jubilee field.

The move to flare gas has been under discussion for some time now because government has been reluctant to breach its ‘no flaring’ policy as it considered other options.

Any move to approve flaring had also received heavy backlash from some civil society groups.

But Tullow oil which is the lead operator for the jubilee oil field earlier confirmed that it had received approval from government to flare gas from the Jubilee Field.

According to the energy ministry, government was forced to approve flaring because of the delay in completing the gas processing facility.

The delay forced operators of the field to re-inject the gas back into the well which has serious consequences for oil production in the jubilee field.

Deputy Director of Oil and Gas at the Environmental Protection Agency, Kojo Agbenor-Efunam, tells Citi Business news the situation has become critical and the impact will be minimal.

‘When you get into a situation that we have now, you have to take a decision and looking at what is happing with a limited amount of flaring, it will not have any negative environmental impact.

If you look at the composition from the field there is no sulphur so there will not be any negative impact.’

But the Africa Centre for Energy Policy is lamenting the decision of government to approve flaring of gas by Tullow oil at the jubilee fields.

According to energy policy think tank, the decision by government will come with economic and environmental costs considering the power crisis the country is currently going through.

ACEP has blamed the inability of the Ghana Gas Company to complete the gas processing plant as the main reason for the government’s decision despite the country’s no flaring policy.

The Director of Policy and Research at Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP), John Peter Amewu told Citi Business News continuous reinjection of gas into the wells was definitely going to compromise the integrity of the well.