Jul 30, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – The National Assembly has on its agenda, a motion calling for government to intervene through various means, including amendments to the Liza I and Liza II permits, in addition to having the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) demand compliance with regards to ExxonMobil Guyana and its routine flaring in the Stabroek Block. However, Clerk of the National Assembly, Sherlock Isaacs, in an invited comment, yesterday told this publication, that the motion referred to was proposed by an Opposition Member, namely Shadow Minister with responsibility for the Oil and Gas Sector, David Patterson, and as such cannot be proceeded with until after the recess which begins on August 8.
Parliament will emerge from its annual two-month recess on October 8, after which time the motion could be proceeded with. According to Isaacs, the next two sittings of the National Assembly are reserved for government’s business, meaning government’s proposals on the parliamentary agenda would be dealt with as a priority.
He explained that after the next two sittings, the following session would be reserved for private members, or members of the political opposition, at which time Patterson—the mover of the motion—would indicate whether he would still wish to proceed with the debate on the vexing issue.
The next two sittings are scheduled for next Tuesday and one other before going into recess.Patterson in his motion, premises his demands on the fact that, inter alia, “the Liza 1 Permit (Clause 3.6) expressly prohibits flaring and venting; with exceptions being made for “tank flashing emission, standing/working/breathing losses” and “flaring related to the startup of the FPSO, emergencies or during periods of maintenance.”
According to Patterson, ExxonMobil Guyana has routinely been engaged in flaring in direct contravention of the terms of the Liza 1 Permit issued and acknowledged, and as a result, has caused, and is causing substantial damage to the environment and the credibility of the Liza 1 Development Project.He notes in the motion too that calculations based upon reported Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL)—ExxonMobil Guyana—production data shows that zero flaring, except for the small amount allowed for pilot flaring, may be achieved by reducing oil production by approximately 15,000 barrels per day.
Patterson observes in the motion that according to Clause 13.1 in the Liza 1 and Liza 2 Permits, EPA “reserves the right to review and amend the conditions attached to this Permit.”
As, such, Patterson in the motion has signalled an intention to call on the National Assembly to not only express its dissatisfaction at the flaring imbroglio, but to ensure that all reasonable measures have been taken or are being taken to prevent the flaring of gas as currently exists, and which is “reported by EEPGL to be 16 million cubic feet, per day (mcfd) at the designed maximum safe oil production limit of 120,000 barrels oil, per day (bopd).”
Patterson by way of the motion is also calling on the administration to direct ExxonMobil Guyana to abide by the terms and conditions of the Liza 1 Permit issued on June 1, 2017, and to request that the EPA “takes all reasonable measures to ensure compliance including, EEPGL achieving zero flaring at the Liza 1 Project through reduction of oil production rates.”
Alternatively the “suspension of same Liza 1 Permit if zero flaring is not met, until it is satisfied that all reasonable and lawful efforts are being made to ensure that there is no flaring of gas as has occurred over the past several weeks.”
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