Article 158 of Law No. 19-13, 2019 , prohibits flaring and venting. According to Article 3 of Executive Decree 21-330, 2021 , flaring is allowed, with prior application to ALNAFT, under certain conditions. Such conditions include: during well testing and debottlenecking; at the start-up of new facilities; at facilities built before July 19, 2005, and waiting to be retrofitted (per Article 235 of Law No. 19-13, 2019); or in the absence of sufficient takeaway pipeline or processing capacity. However, there are limits. For example, during exploration (Article 8 of the Executive Decree 21-330, 2021) the following limits are listed: 24 hours within 5 days for delineation wells, 48 hours within 10 days for wells exploring new horizons, 15 days or 5 million cubic meters (m3) for pilot wells, and 12 months or 50 million m3 for remote wells expected to produce oil and gas. Upstream flares require authorization from ALNAFT; midstream or downstream flares require authorization from the ARH. In exceptional situations, venting during pipeline activities may be allowed, but authorization from the ARH is required.

Article 73 of the Petroleum Law, 2004 , states that when gas flaring is authorized, the supervising authority may determine that a relevant fee be charged in accordance with the quantity and quality of the gas flared and its location. No evidence could be found in the sources consulted on enforcement of such a fee. In the case of marginal or small deposits, the MMRPG may authorize the flaring of associated gas to make its exploitation viable. Flaring authorizations may be granted only upon submission of an EIA.

Article 4 of Resolution No. 143/1998  requires the operator to submit a request for exemption to the undersecretary for breaching the permitted limits. Annex 1 of the resolution describes the procedure for submitting such a request. The regulator has 90 days from the date of receipt of the request to issue the approval or rejection of the request. Every request for an exemption must demonstrate for each reservoir the technical reasons for exceeding the limits and the maximum flow rate of gas to be flared or vented. The documentation and data should be updated every six months by May 31 and November 30 of each year in which exemptions are requested. Section 3 of Annex 1 of Resolution No. 143/1998 states that the Energy Secretariat may judge whether venting should be reduced, either temporarily or permanently, on a case-by-case basis. Section 3 requires allowed venting to follow appropriate procedures and minimize the emissions of harmful gases into the environment. Section 3 also states that Sections 3, 4, and 5 of Resolution No. 105 should be followed in all cases. The Neuquén province’s Decree No. 29/2001  outlines the same criteria as Resolution No. 143/1998.

For the environment plan to be approved by NOPSEMA, operators must demonstrate that emission levels are ALARP and acceptable. NOPSEMA does not prohibit or set limits on flaring or venting, or set methane intensity; instead, it pursues an “outcome-based” regulation. NOPSEMA will reject an environment plan if it does not find emission reduction levels to be ALARP and acceptable. According to the Code of Practice: Onshore Petroleum Activities in the Northern Territory, 2019 , Reduced Emissions Completions (RECs) are required where it is technically feasible to capture gas for sale or use. If RECs are not practicable, flaring must be used instead of venting, which is allowed only if capture or flaring is impossible. In Queensland, according to the Petroleum and Gas (Production and Safety) Act, 2004 , gas flaring is authorized if it is not feasible to use the gas commercially or technically, and venting is authorized if the gas is not safe to use or flare, or flaring is not technically practicable. For petroleum lease holders, venting is also authorized if it is part of a GHG abatement scheme. No similar flaring- or venting-specific guidelines were found in the legal and regulatory documents of other states, whose regulatory approach follows the ALARP principle and aligns with the national approach.

According to Section 3 of Directive 060, 2020 , planned nonroutine flaring and incineration events require a temporary flaring or incineration permit from the AER, with advanced filing of proper documentation. Section 3 lists the conditions that require a temporary flaring permit and describes the requirements for obtaining the permit. All permit applications are published on the Public Notice of Application webpage. The AER may issue a single “blanket” permit to cover several flaring events at different sites in an area if requested by the licensee. Companies may request a variance from the requirements if they have sufficient justification. Licensees must provide specific engineering, economic, and operational information to justify flaring or incinerating gas volumes above the volume allowance threshold. The AER does not consider venting an acceptable alternative to flaring or incineration (except for inert gases subject to certain requirements; see Section 8.9). It requires that gas be flared if gas volumes are sufficient to sustain stable combustion or conserved.

Chapter 2 of the Flaring and Venting Reduction Guideline  on temporary flaring approval for well testing, states that flaring for purposes other than those previously specified in Chapter 1, including well testing, must be approved in the facility permit. Approval to flare may be requested in the well permit application or by amending the well permit. The Drilling and Production Regulation, 2010 , authorizes flaring at wells if the flaring is in line with the well’s permit or is related to drilling operations and is necessary because of an emergency. Flaring is also authorized for well workover or maintenance operations and when the cumulative quantity of flared gas does not exceed 50,000 m³ a year. Section 43 of the Drilling and Production Regulation, 2010, on flaring notification and reporting, requires a permit holder to notify the BCER at least 24 hours before a planned flaring event if the quantity of gas to be flared exceeds 10,000 m³. If an unplanned flaring event occurs and the amount of flared gas exceeds 10,000 m³, the permit holder should notify the BCER within 24 hours.

Section 5 of the Canada Oil and Gas Drilling and Production Regulations, 2009 (“Management System, Application for Authorization and Well Approvals”; see footnote 8), requires that the application for authorization be accompanied by information about any proposed flaring or venting of gas. This information should include the rationale, rate, quantity, and duration of the flaring or venting. Provincial regulators have more specific guidelines on applying for and obtaining flaring and venting authorizations.

Directive PNG036: Venting and Flaring Requirements, 2019 , imposes several restrictions on flaring and venting: Section 6.1 (Associated Gas Venting Limit) states that oil wells and facilities that flare and vent a combined volume of associated gas greater than 900 m³ a day should flare all nonconserved gas, unless it needs to be vented to avoid emergencies. Section 6.2 (Associated Gas Flaring) states that oil and gas facilities may flare in excess of 900 m³ a day if they meet the Directive S-20: Saskatchewan Upstream Flaring and Incineration Requirements, 2019 . However, if flared volumes exceed 900 m³ a day, and the flare is within 500 meters of an occupied dwelling, a public facility, or an urban center, the gas should be conserved unless the operator obtains consent from the occupants or approval from the regulator. Section 7.1 (Gas Venting) bans venting at gas wells and facilities, including gas processing plants unless it is an emergency. Section 7.2 (Gas Flaring) bans flaring at gas wells and facilities but allows for flaring at gas processing plants as per the conditions of their licenses. In addition, according to Section 5, no venting or flaring from any source should cause off-lease odors or cause emissions in excess of the Saskatchewan Ambient Air Quality Standards. Also, operators should not vent any volume of gas that contains hydrogen sulfide in a concentration greater than 10 moles per kilomole of gas as measured at the source, or 0.01 mole per kilomole as measured at the lease edge.

Any activity or operation undertaken by the operator as part of an oil and gas contract requires the relevant documentation and forms to be filed with the MME for it to approve and control the applicable activity. Article 10 in MME Resolution 40066/2022  requires a flaring authorization during the production phase. Article 18 provides the details required for a flaring authorization. Specific requirements for routine flaring are stipulated in Article 11, and for unforeseeable events, Article 19 provides for situation-specific flaring authorizations. ANH Circular 18/2014 on gas control and flaring specifies that all requests to flare should be submitted in writing to the ANH. The ANH authorizes the gas volume, time of flaring, and whether the gas flared should be subject to royalty.

According to Article 72 of the Hydrocarbon Operations Regulation, 2018 , flaring must be included in technical analysis and approved by the MEM. Article 73 reiterates that flaring must be technically justified and at a minimum level. Article 57 of Executive Decree 1215, 2001 , also mentions that flaring is allowed with prior approval if full use is not technically and economically feasible. For existing facilities, Article 3 of Ministerial Agreement MEM-MEM-2022-0047-AM, 2022 , requires operators to seek up-front approval from ACR before any flaring of associated gas. Article 6 has the same requirement for new facilities, but Article 9 explicitly bans routine flaring for this group.