EQT Corp. is launching a pilot programme to convert drilling rigs to run on LNG, displacing the diesel used to power equipment at the well site. This programme marks the first LNG rig conversion in the Marcellus Shale and will provide a cleaner burning alternative fuel for the region’s drilling operations.
“We want to be a leader in reducing the environmental impacts related to drilling and we are proud to be the first operator in the Marcellus to launch such a program,” states Steve Schlotterbeck, President Exploration and Production for EQT. “Along with safety, protection of the environment is top-of-mind for our employees, contractors, and of course communities. We continually look for opportunities to improve our operations and displacing diesel, by introducing the use of alternatives such as LNG and
field gas, is one way of doing so,” Schlotterbeck continued.
LNG is natural gas in its liquid form and from a physical property standpoint is as safe as, or safer than, using traditional fuels, such as propane or diesel. LNG, if exposed, evaporates quickly and leaves no residue on water or soil. Compared to diesel, natural gas emits between 20% and 30% less CO2 and has a fraction of the emissions of nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, and particulates.
There are other LNG benefits, such as a reduction in fuel costs – with LNG being about 40% less expensive than diesel. The use of LNG also enables gas producers to reduce US dependence on foreign oil imports – with sourcing coming from various US shale plays. The LNG being used for EQT’s pilot programme is produced locally from Marcellus natural gas reserves.
Several US companies are planning to open LNG export terminals to start selling its domestically produced natural gas and this will also provide fuel for domestic consumers of LNG including the oil and gas industry.
EQT’s initial rig conversion is now operating in Northern West Virginia; and pending evaluation of the pilot programme, the Company hopes to convert additional rigs in West Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Adapted form press release by Peter Farrell.
Read the article online at: https://www.lngindustry.com/small-scale-lng/06072012/eqt-corp-to-convert-shale-drilling-rigs-to-run-on-lng/