Ovintiv Inc. | Direct Measurement of Methane Emissions at Ovintiv Inc.

AGM date
Previous AGM date
Resolution details
Company ticker
Lead filer
Resolution ask
Report on or disclose
ESG theme
  • Environment
ESG sub-theme
  • Methane
Type of vote
Shareholder proposal
Filer type
Company sector
Company HQ country
Resolved clause
Resolved, shareholders request that Ovintiv issue a report analysing a critical climate change concern, the reliability of its methane emission disclosures. The report should:
be made public, omit proprietary information, and be prepared expeditiously at reasonable cost;summarize the outcome of efforts to directly measure methane emissions by Ovintiv, using recognized frameworks such as OGMP;describe any material difference between direct measurement results and Company’s reported methane emissions; andassess the degree to which any differences would alter estimates of the Company’s Scope 1 emissions.Supporting Statement:
At management’s discretion, we recommend that the report describe:
the types of source- and site-level measurements used;plans to improve emission estimates over time, consistent with frameworks such as OGMP;any material difference between third-party direct measurements results and Company’s reported methane emissions, by site or region; andplans to validate emissions estimates and disclosure through a third-party audit or evaluation.
Whereas clause
Whereas, methane is at least 80 times more potent than carbon dioxide over a 20-year period. In 2020, 32 percent of U.S. methane emissions from human activities came from natural gas and petroleum systems.[1] According to the United Nations Environment Programme, cutting methane is the strongest lever we have to slow climate change over the next 25 years.[2]
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methodology used to estimate methane emissions fails to capture many major leaks, wasting valuable product worth $2 billion per year. Studies have found actual emissions to be 50 to 100 percent higher than reported emissions.[3] In certain basins, emissions are more than 10 times industry disclosed figures.[4] Therefore, oil and gas industry Scope 1 emissions may be significantly higher than currently reported. Methane emissions can be quantified directly through measurement (e.g., by detector, drone or satellite), or indirectly through calculations and modelling. Estimates improve when direct measurement methodologies are used, when emissions are identified by source type and at a site or facility level, and then reconciled, as shown by the Oil and Gas Methane Partnership 2.0 (OGMP).[5]
In 2021, investors managing more than $6 trillion supported strong federal methane regulations. The U.S. joined the Global Methane Pledge, committing to using best available inventory methodologies to quantify methane emissions. Companies across the world, including ConocoPhillips, Devon, Occidental and Pioneer, have joined the OGMP, committing to improving methane data quality and consistency.[6] Companies that do not adequately manage methane emissions risk their reputation and license to operate, as investors, regulators and civil society are setting expectations to address this issue.
According to EPA data, Ovintiv ranks 80th in methane intensity among U.S. top 100 oil and gas producers, with an intensity of 0.06 percent.[7] However, given the limitations of EPA’s methodology, this ranking lacks credibility. Ovintiv has not taken the critical steps to reduce investor concerns by using direct methane measurement across all operations and reporting on it.
[1] https://www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/overview-greenhouse-gases
[2] https://www.ccacoalition.org/sites/default/files/press/GMA%20Press%20Release%20FINAL.pdf
[3] https://www.seas.harvard.edu/news/2021/03/oil-and-natural-gas-production-emit-more-methane-previously-thought
[4] https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-25017-4
[5] https://business.edf.org/files/Investors-Guide-to-the-OGMP_09.17.21_FINAL.pdf
[6] http://ogmpartnership.com/partners
[7] https://www.ceres.org/resources/reports/benchmarking-methane-and-other-ghg-emissions-oil-natural-gas-production-united

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