With financial support from the Environmental Defense Fund, Dr. Eduardo (Jay) Olaguer used the HARC microscale air quality model to assess the ozone impacts of oil and gas production facilities in the Eagle Ford Shale.
Mobile Monitoring of Volatile Organic Compounds in the Eagle Ford Shale
HARC deployed a mobile laboratory equipped with a Geographical Positioning System (GPS), a portable meteorological station, and a Proton Transfer Reaction-Mass Spectrometer (PTR-MS) to perform real time measurements of ambient concentrations of toxic volatile organic compounds in the vicinity of oil and gas sites located on a large private property in the Eagle Ford Shale of South Texas. The HARC microscale air quality model was then used to attribute observed peaks in ambient concentration to specific emission points, such as flares and loading/unloading facilities, and to quantify the associated emissions. The air quality impacts of the inferred emissions were also assessed.
E. P. Olaguer, M.H. Erickson, A. Wijesinghe, B.S. Neish, J. Williams, and J. Colvin, 2016; “Updated Methods for Assessing the Impacts of Nearby Gas Drilling and Production on Neighborhood Air Quality and Human Health,” J. Air and Waste Management Assoc., vol. 66, 173-183.
Methane is a prevalent greenhouse gas. HARC is working with to review the EPA modeling approach, compile data regarding the sampled production sites, and investigate estimated site emissions.
Recent severe weather events have caused considerable damage to the Houston region.
HARC is developing a detailed particulate matter (PM) 2.5 emissions inventory for Harris County, Texas. PM is a type pollution composed of a complex mixture of extremely small particles. The size of particles is linked to their potential for causing health-related problems.