Denver-based independent Ovintiv Inc. is setting its sights on sharply reducing the methane intensity of its North American onshore operations by one-third over the next four years, and it wants the entire workforce to buy in.

Ovintiv

The board-approved 33% reduction in methane intensity, to be met by 2025, would be tied to the annual incentive compensation program for all employees beginning in 2021. 

The planned reductions are included in Ovintiv’s 16th annual sustainability report, which highlighted environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals.

“ESG is one of the board’s highest priorities,” said Chair Peter Dea. “We safely produce the products that make modern life possible and realize the importance of reducing our emissions. From our ongoing dialogue with investors and other stakeholders, we know they share the importance we place on this topic.”

Ovintiv has a multi-basin portfolio that stretches from the Montney Shale in Canada to the Anadarko and Permian basins, and today it is primarily focused on crude and condensate. However, it also had around 1.5 Bcf/d of natural gas output in 3Q2020.

CEO Doug Suttles said Ovintiv has a strong track record on environmental performance “but we know we need to do more. By setting this ambitious target and linking it to every employee’s compensation we are sending a clear signal. Based on our team’s track record of innovation and efficient delivery, I’m confident we’ll meet this target and strive to exceed it.”

The methane intensity reduction goal would be benchmarked against the 2019 figure in 2019, which was 0.15 metric tons of methane/1,000 boe. Cutting the intensity by one-third would bring it down to 0.10 metric tons.

Ovintiv noted that it was an early adopter of disclosure frameworks under the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board. The methane-focused reduction metric also supports the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and guides its approach to sustainability, management noted.