Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Payara Permit armed with two payment mechanisms on gas wastage – Bharrat

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In an effort to ensure Guyana’s oil industry is regulated in a manner that serves the public interest, Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat said that the government has taken several steps to heighten the safeguards in environmental permits granted to ExxonMobil’s affiliate, Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL).

Mr. Bharrat was keen to point out that the Payara Environmental Permit is evidence of this as he noted that it contains two key improvements on gas wastage which the Liza Phase One and Two permits do not possess.

Exxon to provide over GY$400 million to support government audits for Payara project

“As you are aware, we decided to charge ExxonMobil a fee for flaring and that is the carbon tax, but we are also going to charge a fee for wasting our portion of the gas. These are two protective mechanisms in the Payara permit and for sure the Yellowtail project may even have a more advanced version of this provision because we want to strengthen the provisions with each permit without disincentivizing the companies of course,” expressed the minister.

He added, “But we still have to ensure we protect our people and the environment as we seek development. This has been central to the agenda of the government.”

The foregoing sentiments are also shared by Vice President, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo. During a press conference held in September, he noted that the action taken against ExxonMobil for excessive flaring on the Liza Destiny, Guyana’s first floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel has demonstrated that the administration is more than capable of standing up to oil companies in defence of its no flaring policy. Jagdeo reminded that the government has taken action by taxing the emissions beyond commissioning at US$45 per tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent while adding that Guyana is now among a group of few countries with such a tax.

60-day flaring allowance for Liza, Payara tougher than international benchmark – EPA

Speaking to other key changes, the Vice President had said that ExxonMobil is now required to ensure there is management of waste from “cradle to grave.”

“You would observe that in many countries the waste is left by the oil companies for the countries to handle after they are gone but this will not happen to Guyana as Exxon will have to handle waste from cradle to grave including through their subcontractors. They also have to treat wastewater to international standards before it is discharged or reinjected,” said the Vice President.

Guyana’s President, Dr. Irfaan Ali has expressed satisfaction with how the administration has handled flaring of gas while noting that his government will continue to implement its agenda for the safe development of the oil and gas sector.

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