Illustration; Source: OMV

OMV steps up its methane reduction game by joining UN program for curbing such emissions

Austria’s OMV is the latest in the long line of oil and gas players that have thrown their support behind the Oil & Gas Methane Partnership (OGMP 2.0) of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), as the comprehensive and credible reporting framework for the fossil fuel industry, which improves the accuracy and transparency of methane emissions reporting, enabling energy companies to slash their methane footprint.

Illustration; Source: OMV

While there is a potential release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere across the entire oil and gas value chain, particularly in exploration and production (E&P) activities, methane is perceived to be a powerful greenhouse gas and the second biggest contributor to climate change after carbon dioxide. 

With this at the forefront, the OGMP was originally launched at the UN Climate Summit in 2014. This is a partnership between UNEP, the European Commission (EC), the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), Clean Air Task Force (CATF), the World Bank, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC), and nearly 140 companies with assets in more than 70 countries on five continents, representing over 40% of the world’s oil and gas production.

Giulia Ferrini, OGMP 2.0 Programme Manager, commented: “We are thrilled to welcome OMV to the partnership. This is a valuable step towards expanding methane accountability and transparency across the industry. As customers, investors and governments demand stronger methane performance, we hope OMV’s commitment will inspire others to join OGMP 2.0 and adopt a high standard of emissions reporting and management.”

OMV plans to achieve an E&P methane intensity of 0.1% or lower by 2030 as part of its sustainability strategy. This builds on the Australian player’s measures aimed at optimizing and decarbonizing its operational processes, increasing energy efficiency, reducing flaring and venting, and cutting methane emissions through leak detection and improvement of asset integrity.

Berislav Gašo, OMV’s Executive Vice President of Energy, remarked: “OMV takes the topic of managing and mitigating methane emissions very seriously and this program will strengthen our efforts to ensure accurate measurement and transparent reporting. It is also set to meet the growing expectations of the capital market.”

In a bid to streamline its energy portfolio in line with its strategy of reducing oil and gas production over time, OMV decided to divest its stake in SapuraOMV Upstream, a 50:50 joint venture between Sapura Energy and the Austrian firm, to TotalEnergies for a total cash consideration of $903 million.