New Study Identifies Methane Super – Emitters in Largest U.S. Oilfield

Published on: Jun 3, 2021

A new study published today in Environmental Science and Technology, led by Carbon Mapper Project Scientist Dan Cusworth, identified more than 1,000 high emission point sources of the potent greenhouse gas methane from the Permian Basin oilfield and found that about half of these sources are likely to be malfunctioning oilfield equipment. If the most persistent leaks – only 147 sources – in this newfound group were repaired, methane emissions in the region would drop by 56 metric tons an hour. That’s equivalent to about 9% of total methane emissions from oil and gas production in the entire United States, according to estimates from the Environmental Protection agency.




Spectroscopy is broadly defined as the study of how electromagnetic energy interacts with matter. There are many different methods that use the principles of spectroscopy to detect, identify, and quantify data about matter including gasses, liquids, and solids.

Spectrometers are instruments that measure this interaction between these different materials and energy.