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Sign Up for Winter Ozone Alerts!

The USU Bingham Research Center has partnered with the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (UDEQ) to provide email alerts when ozone exceeding EPA standards is forecast for the Uintah Basin.  The purpose of these alerts is to provide the oil and gas industry with real-time information about air quality in the Basin so they can take action to reduce emissions of ozone-forming pollutants.

Sign up go to the USU Bingham Research Center website.  When you sign up, we will send you emails:

  1. Two days in advance of when moderate air quality is forecast (unless there is no snow on the ground, or unless you opt to only receive email if exceedance days are forecast),
  2. Two days in advance of when ozone exceedance days are forecast (unless there is no snow on the ground),
  3. When an inversion episode ends (or if one was forecast but did not materialize).
  4. You will receive a subscription confirmation email after you submit the form on the website.

 

 


Suggested Actions to Reduce Emissions During High Ozone Episodes

Actions that all operators should consider implementing

  • Training:
    • Prior to the winter season, train staff about the importance of minimizing VOC and NOx emissions during winter inversion episodes, and about ways to reduce emissions.  See DEQ’s suggestions here.
    • Each time high ozone is forecast, remind staff about how to reduce emissions
  • Inspection and maintenance that can be performed each time a facility is visited:
    • Check that thief hatches on tanks are properly sealed and closed
    • Perform leak checks to ensure valves, fittings, etc., are not leaking, and repair leaks if found.  Options for leak checks include:
      • AVO inspections (least effective)
      • Natural gas detectors (more effective). We use this one, which is priced at under $1500.
      • Optical gas imaging cameras (most effective).  These are expensive, but you can borrow one from the DEQ-sponsored ULend program.  See ulend.utah.gov.
  • Vehicle use:
    • Limit vehicle idling
    • Avoid spilling fuel
    • Keep vehicles properly tuned, keep tires properly inflated
    • Maintain speed limits
    • Carpool when possible
  • Solvent use:
    • Delay refilling methanol or other chemical tanks when possible
    • Only use paints, chemicals, and cleaning products that have low VOC emissions

Actions that may be more difficult to implement

  • Postpone liquids hauling until after an ozone episode
  • Postpone or avoid maintenance activities that could lead to emissions, such as liquids unloadings/blowdowns, venting lines, line pigging, etc.
  • Postpone well completions or recompletions
  • Postpone or avoid gas releases associated with startups and shutdowns of compressors
  • Reduce circulation rates of glycol dehydrators
  • Capture/control emissions from equipment, such as dehydration units, pneumatic devices, engines, heaters, etc.

condensate tanks

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