It is generally recognized that approximately 95 percent of the waste gases flared consist of the hydrocarbons natural gas (90-percent CH4), propane, ethylene, propylene, butadiene and butane. During the flaring process, these hydrocarbons react with atmospheric oxygen to form CO2 and water. Upstream flaring (oil and gas production) accounts for approximately 90 percent of all flaring, while downstream flaring (refineries, transport facilities and chemical plants) accounts for 9-10 percent, and industrial flaring (water treatment plants, landfills and coal mines) accounts for less than 1 percent. Flaring from upstream sources releases CH4 and small quantities of other hydrocarbons and possibly inert gases such as nitrogen (N2), CO2 and CO. Flaring from downstream sources generally releases a mixture of hydrocarbons, and industrial sources release CH4 and CO2 along with small amounts of other inert gases.
The 4th generation of GTL Technology, developed by INFRA, provides energy companies with a great opportunity to monetize these wasted resources by converting “wasted” methane into premium quality synthetic product, easily upgradable to transportation fuels.