No evidence regarding economic evaluations could be found in the sources consulted.

Flaring authorizations may be granted only upon submission of a substantiated technical, economic, and environmental impact evaluation conducted by Sonangol that demonstrates that it is not feasible to exploit or preserve the natural gas.

Resolution No. 143/1998 , subsection 5 of Annex 1 (“Norms and Procedures for Venting Gas, Section 5, Reasons for Exception–Gas Venting”), requires a technical and economic feasibility study in cases in which gas at the venting point has a high content of inert or toxic gases and the gas-to-oil ratio in each well is less than the 1,500 m³ of gas per m³ of oil, the limit stipulated in Section 3.2. The study should include analysis of the effects of the flow rate and total volume of vented gas. This analysis should demonstrate that neither the flow rates nor the volumes to be vented will reduce the exploitation of the gas. The study should include the flow rates and composition of the vented gas and the disposal method for each type of toxic gas produced. The Neuquén province’s Decree No. 29/2001 sets the same criteria as Resolution No. 143/1998.

In New South Wales, under the Petroleum (Onshore) Act, 1991 , the beneficial use of gas may be permitted under a petroleum operations title only if that gas would otherwise have been flared or vented as part of licensed operations (Section 28B). Similar language was not found in the laws and regulations of the other jurisdictions consulted. However, there are frequent references to good or sound oilfield practices and optimum recovery of resources.

Section 8.1.6 of ANP Ordinance 123/2000  stipulates that the PAP should include the volume of associated gas that would not be used or re-injected. The PAP must also demonstrate, based on economic evaluation, that the oil or gas production of the field would not be economically feasible if the gas so identified cannot be flared. To reduce flaring, the production of oil and gas may be started only after the installation of a system that utilizes or re-injects any natural gas, unless the ANP grants an exception upon consideration of the economic evaluation.

Directive 060, 2020, Section 2.9 (Economic Evaluation of Gas Conservation; see footnote 1) requires upstream firms to conduct an economic analysis following the decision-tree framework. Every 12 months, licensees should update the conservation economics for any site that is flaring or venting a combined volume of more than 900 m³ a day. The licensee should keep this information on file and provide it to the AER upon request within five working days. All new and existing flares and vents must be evaluated, except for small intermittent sources (less than 100 m³ a month) in midstream facilities such as processing plants, pipelines, and compressor stations (Sections 4, 5, and 6 of Directive 060). Alberta has more than 450,000 oil wells of mainly lower productivity and a small number of large oil sands projects. A facility’s individual energy needs will determine the optimal utilization strategy, how much associated gas it produces, and the well’s access to processing and pipeline infrastructure. The break-even economic criteria allow for the recovery of financing costs as well as capital and operating expenses. Conservation options include delivering gas to the market and using it on site as a fuel and for electricity generation and reservoir pressure maintenance. Directive 060 instructs oil, gas, and power generation price forecasts to be used; and asks for details on reserves, capital, and operating cost assumptions. A conservation project is considered economic, and thus requires that the gas be conserved, if the net present value of the project is greater than Can$55,000 (about US$40,400 as of May 2023). In section 21 of this chapter, we discuss how fiscal incentives influence this economic assessment. 

Section 1.8 of the Flaring and Venting Reduction Guideline  on economic evaluation of gas conservation, is similar to Section 2 of Alberta’s Directive 060 (see section 12 of the case study on Alberta). British Columbia’s guidance considers a solution gas conservation project with a net present value of less than Can$50,000 (about US$36,760 as of May 2023) uneconomic. The project economics should be reevaluated annually (within 12 months of the last evaluation) using updated prices, costs, and forecasts.

Section 50 (Gas or Product Conservation) of the Oil and Gas Conservation Regulations, 2012 , states that for conservation purposes, the minister may require the operator of an oil well to collect and either use or sell the gas produced. Also, the minister may require the operator to analyze gas composition. If, in the opinion of the minister, a product is present in a quantity that can be economically extracted, the minister may require the product’s separation, conservation, and utilization.

Article 52 of MME Resolution 181495/2009  details possible flaring exceptions in cases where gas capture is not economically viable. The operator must justify that gas capture is uneconomic, and the MME must approve the justification. For routine flaring, Articles 11 and 16 in MME Resolution 40066/2022  reaffirm the above approach for gas that cannot be produced economically viable.

Article 57 of Executive Decree 1215, 2001 , requires operators to have an approved environmental management plan establishing feasible technical alternatives to gas flaring for emission reduction and control. It also requires prioritization of associated gas for re-injection and enhanced oil recovery. If re-injection is not possible, a technical and economic analysis should be carried out to identify the best use of the gas, preferably for electricity generation. If the technical and economic conditions do not allow full use in certain facilities, unused gas may be flared, with prior authorization from the MEM.