Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2021-911
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2021-911

  12 Nov 2021

12 Nov 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Updated Global Fuel Exploitation Inventory (GFEI) for methane emissions from the oil, gas, and coal sectors: evaluation with inversions of atmospheric methane observations

Tia R. Scarpelli1,2,a, Daniel J. Jacob1, Shayna Grossman2, Xiao Lu1,3, Zhen Qu1, Melissa P. Sulprizio1, Yuzhong Zhang4,5, Frances Reuland6, and Deborah Gordon7 Tia R. Scarpelli et al.
  • 1School of Engineering and Applied Science, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA
  • 2Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA
  • 3School of Atmospheric Science, Sun Yat-sen University, Zhuhai, Guangdong, China
  • 4Key Laboratory of Coastal Environment and Resources of Zhejiang Province, School of Engineering, Westlake University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
  • 5Institute of Advanced Technology, Westlake Institute for Advanced Study, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
  • 6Rocky Mountain Institute, Boulder, CO, USA
  • 7Rocky Mountain Institute, Providence, RI, USA
  • anow at: University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland

Abstract. We present an updated version of the Global Fuel Exploitation Inventory (GFEI) for methane emissions and evaluate it with results from global inversions of atmospheric methane observations from satellite (GOSAT) and in situ platforms (GLOBALVIEWplus). GFEI allocates methane emissions from oil, gas, and coal sectors and subsectors to a 0.1° × 0.1° grid by using the national emissions reported by individual countries to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and mapping them to infrastructure locations. Our updated GFEI v2 gives annual emissions for 2010–2019 that incorporate the most recent UNFCCC national reports, new oil/gas well locations, and improved spatial distribution of emissions for Canada, Mexico, and China. Russia's oil/gas emissions decrease by 83 % in its latest UNFCCC report while Nigerian emissions increase sevenfold, reflecting changes in assumed emission factors. Global gas emissions in GFEI v2 show little net change from 2010 to 2019 while oil emissions decrease and coal emissions slightly increase. Global emissions in GFEI v2 are lower than the EDGAR v6 and IEA inventories for all sectors though there is considerable variability in the comparison for individual countries. GFEI v2 estimates higher emissions by country than the Climate TRACE inventory with notable exceptions in Russia, the US, and the Middle East. Inversion results using GFEI as a prior estimate confirm the lower Russian emissions in the latest UNFCCC report but Nigerian emissions are too high. Oil/gas emissions are generally underestimated by the national inventories for the highest emitting countries including the US, Venezuela, Uzbekistan, Canada, and Turkmenistan. Offshore emissions in GFEI tend to be overestimated. Our updated GFEI v2 provides a platform for future evaluation of national emission inventories reported to the UNFCCC using the newer generation of satellite instruments such as TROPOMI with improved coverage and spatial resolution. It responds to recent aspirations of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to integrate top-down and bottom-up information into the construction of national emission inventories.

Tia R. Scarpelli et al.

Status: open (until 24 Dec 2021)

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Tia R. Scarpelli et al.

Tia R. Scarpelli et al.

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Short summary
We present a spatially explicit version of the national inventories of oil, gas, and coal methane emissions as submitted by individual countries to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2021. We then compare our spatially explicit inventory with atmospheric methane observations with the goal of identifying potential under- and over-estimates in the national inventories.
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