In support of our greenhouse gas (GHG) emission and flaring intensity reduction targets, we track and monitor air emissions at each of our assets and undertake a variety of emission reduction initiatives. Our efforts focus on our largest-emitting facilities and on opportunities that are technically and economically feasible and where we are able to achieve stakeholder approval.
The following case studies supplement those found in our 2019 Sustainability Report.
Flexible Hose for Freshwater Transport
In North Dakota, we continued to utilize flexible hose to transport fresh water directly from the water source to our wells, instead of using trucks. Over the past five years, we have steadily increased the percentage of water we supply to our fracturing operations by hose rather than by truck, which reduces noise, GHG emissions and the potential for accidents associated with truck traffic. In 2019, 100% of the water we used for hydraulic fracturing in North Dakota (approximately 27 million barrels) was transported using flexible hoses, eliminating 216,000 truck deliveries and 8.6 million miles driven and cutting about 18,734 tonnes of transportation-related GHG emissions. As an additional benefit, in winter months we use line heaters along with the hoses to deliver 75°F water into insulated tanks, eliminating the need to heat water on location. Our goal is to continue using flexible hose to transport fresh water for all well completions moving forward.
Replacement of Diesel with Natural Gas
Hess Midstream LP’s compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel facility near the Tioga Gas Plant in North Dakota has been in operation since 2016. Due to increased CNG demand, we added a second CNG compressor and two additional heavy-duty filling stations to the facility in late 2018 and early 2019, doubling the facility’s capacity.
The CNG is partially displacing diesel in high horsepower engines for drilling and in water heaters for well completion operations in the region and is capable of fueling CNG/gasoline bifuel light duty trucks. We also use it to power six boilers and up to six frac water heaters that have been converted to be able to operate exclusively on CNG – though they also can operate on diesel or propane – during cold weather operations. This use of CNG is helping us meet our GHG goals by decreasing flaring and reducing the number of diesel truck deliveries. CNG also has air quality benefits and reduces costs by displacing the need for more expensive diesel, propane or gasoline fuel.
In 2019, our use of CNG as a fuel continued to increase, as Hess and other operators ramped up activity in the Bakken. During the year, the use of CNG from the fueling facility alone eliminated the need for approximately 1.7 million gallons of diesel, propane or gasoline, up from 1.2 million gallons in 2018.