"One Site, 95 Tons of Methane an Hour"

"In January, a satellite detected 13 plumes of methane, a potent planet-warming gas, coming from the largest coal mine in Russia."

"A remote-sensing satellite has detected one of the largest releases of methane from a single industrial site, an underground coal mine in south-central Russia. The finding is another indication of the scope of the problem of curbing emissions of methane, a potent planet-warming gas.

Thirteen plumes of the gas were observed at the Raspadskya mine, the largest coal mine in Russia, in late January during a single pass of a satellite operated by GHGSat, a commercial emissions-monitoring firm. The total flow rate from all the plumes was estimated at about 87 metric tons (about 95 U.S. tons) an hour.

“This is the biggest source we’ve ever seen,” said Brody Wight, director of energy, landfills and mines at GHGSat, which was formed in 2011 and now has six emissions-sensing satellites. By contrast, the highest rate measured at Aliso Canyon, a natural gas storage facility in Southern California that had a major leak for nearly four months in 2015 and 2016, was about 60 metric tons an hour."

Henry Fountain reports for the New York Times June 14, 2022.

Source: NYTimes, 06/15/2022