Generate Power from Natural Gas at Drill Sites!
The flaring of natural gas from oil drilling rigs in Nigeria has been criticized repeatedly on this blog as well as by Imnakoya, Solomonsydelle, Sara Mosher, Ed Kashi, and other bloggers. Now there is a possible solution, at least for the gas that is being flared from rigs operating onshore.
Natural gas rides on top of liquid petroleum in natural reservoirs and must be burned or "flared" in order for the petroleum to be extracted safely. According to Mr. Jeff Herbach, a San Francisco IT consultant, many drilling rigs actually do use natural gas ‘as-is’ to power small electric generators on site. The one pictured above is made by Capstone Turbines. Although the generators are specifically built for use on oil-drilling installations, there is no reason not to use them in Nigeria to generate electricity for the small local communities around the oil wells.
Mr. Herbach was prompted to write a note to author Ed Kashi after hearing a radio interview about his new book, The Curse of the Black Gold. I hope to find time to read this soon, but I will recommend it anyway to anyone reading this post.