BP plc has become the latest major to differentiate its natural gas through MiQ, with the U.S. onshore business achieving a top grade for the methane emissions performance of some wells in the Haynesville Shale.

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MiQ’s independently audited certification system reviewed emissions in the Haynesville that are managed by BP’s Lower 48 arm BPX Energy Inc. MiQ helps operators differentiate themselves through methane-emissions performance. MiQ currently certifies about 10 Bcf/d, or around 2.5% of the global gas market and 11% of U.S. gas production.

“Tackling methane emissions is vital for natural gas to play its fullest role in the energy transition,” said BPX’s Faye Gerard, vice president of Low Carbon and Sustainability. “We’re in action to reduce these emissions from our operations. MiQ’s certification helps validate the steps we’re taking and makes us even more confident we’re providing the energy the world needs with fewer emissions.”

Possible Permian, Eagle Ford Certification

BPX’s South Haynesville Facility in Texas produces about 0.2 Bcf/d. The 70 well sites were certified using the MiQ Standard, which grades a facility’s production from “A” to “F” based on its methane emissions. An A grade represents methane intensity of less than 0.05%, while F represents up to 2%. Third-party auditor GHD independently verified and awarded the top grade to the BPX facility.

BPX now is “assessing further certification opportunities across its U.S. onshore operated portfolio” in the Haynesville, as well as the Eagle Ford Shale and Permian Basin.

BPX said it provides certification data using a combination of advanced methane-monitoring technologies that include optical gas imaging cameras. The cameras are mounted to drones and fixed-wing aircraft, as well as ground-based cameras. BPX also uses data from field-measurement devices to quantify methane emissions from targeted sources.

For each MMBtu of certified gas, MiQ is providing one certificate from the 70 wells that make up BPX’s South Haynesville Facility. The verifications are delivered to certified gas buyers and traders through BP’s account at the MiQ Digital Registry.

MiQ also has partnerships to certify, aka differentiate, natural gas supply with Chesapeake Energy Corp., Comstock Resources Inc., EQT Corp. and ExxonMobil.

Actions to reduce worldwide carbon emissions by the recent Conference of Parties 26, aka COP26, as well as the Global Methane Pledge, “have clearly demonstrated that the world expects and needs reduced methane emissions from the oil and gas sector,” said MiQ senior adviser Georges Tijbosch. “MiQ is committed to providing the transparency required to achieve this.”

MiQ’s vision, according to management, “is to create a market where certified natural gas can be traded like other historical commodities, ultimately creating incentives to drive down methane emissions across the board.”

The nonprofit MiQ was established by RMI (formerly the Rocky Mountain Institute) and SystemMiQ, a global sustainability consultancy and investment firm. MiQ and partner Carbon Limits in May also said they are looking to roll out an emissions certification standard for liquefied natural gas volumes.