Introducing Environmental Assessments 2.0 – aka TrustWell 2.0

The energy transition has left us all navigating uncharted waters – in various areas, we’re building something from the ground up without a road map. This hard work requires collaboration across borders, industries, and public and private sectors. Collaboration and transparency are foundational to a pragmatic and sustainable approach to the energy transition. At Project Canary, we believe a holistic approach to environmental performance, grounded in accurate data with rigorous assessment that permit true differentiation, must be at the heart of this approach. The markets, too, are increasingly focusing on granular data and transparency, as evidenced by the rise of climate registries focused on tracking multiple aspects of environmental performance data from end to end.

We’ve long anticipated this shift to granular, transparent data, and we’re proud to use our market-leading position to expedite this movement and increase accountability. That’s why today, we’re excited to announce that we’re making our entire environmental assessment protocol public. The market increasingly understands the importance of environmental attributes and expects that operators prioritize emissions reduction and environmental performance. Both operators and buyers want to be able to more readily differentiate the environmental footprint of their operations and the gas molecules. Doing so requires more data, more insights and more transparency. Accordingly, we are formally releasing our environmental assessment (TrustWell) methodology to the public to meet both market expectations and provide producers with an actionable path forward and buyers with more clarity.

Within this new framework we want to highlight our approach to methane specifically. TrustWell is and will remain focused on holistic environmental performance while our new stand-alone Low Methane Rating (LMR) will spotlight methane intensity. The LMR provides a granular look at pad-level emissions performance while also requiring operators to maintain a low methane intensity at the basin level. A TrustWell environmental assessment score, combined with the Low Methane Rating and emissions quantification, if desired, can be leveraged to further differentiate environmental performance.

Project Canary has completed over 10,000 environmental risk assessments (also known as our TrustWell product for upstream assets) to date. The 600+ data points we assess against various environmental best practices allow operators to differentiate themselves through engineering practices, operational excellence, and environmental stewardship. Increasing focus on critical environmental attributes such as methane emissions and freshwater stewardship has helped establish and quickly grow the differentiated natural gas market, also called responsibly sourced or certified gas. Buyers of natural gas have recognized that the environmental footprint of how the gas is produced and transported differs by basin and operator. We’re proud to see the market recognize what we’ve focused on all along—a comprehensive, data-driven approach to emissions and environmental and operational performance to understand these differences.

All molecules are not created equally, and the TrustWell assessment identifies and recognizes those operators implementing the best environmental practices that truly differentiate their production with defensible, site and facility-level environmental assessments and associated scores. We provide objective analyses and independent assessments against industry best practices for stakeholders across the energy value chain. The TrustWell assessment program is based upon various industry best practices. These benchmarks were developed in conjunction with numerous 3rd party experts and stakeholders, including from industry, academia, state government, and non-government entities. These environmental benchmarks are now public and open.

In today’s oil and gas market, regulators favor operators implementing best-in-class management practices and leading technologies – evidenced by ongoing discussions about including permitting preferences for E&P companies exceeding current regulations and standards. Simultaneously, producers are seeking ways to differentiate their performance, while buyers want to more deeply understand environmental performance and see more immediate improvement beyond 20+-year emissions reduction goals. The markets want more than just sufficiency standards.

As you explore the TrustWell documentation, we want to highlight one fundamental point: the TrustWell assessment is technology agnostic. There is no conflict of interest between our methane measurement service and environmental assessment offerings, and operators can and have achieved the highest possible TrustWell scores regardless of the sensor partner they choose to use. This is important because fundamental to our approach is the belief that each site is unique and requires a bespoke measurement strategy.

In the interest of full transparency, we’re planning to make the framework and methodology behind all of our assessments — which have been developed through multi-stakeholder processes that includes involvement of and reviews by industry stakeholders, third-party consultancies, state government, and academic experts — fully available. Precise measurement and rigorous data reporting that is auditable by additional third parties is at the heart of Project Canary’s mission. We have recently released our stand-alone Low Methane Rating protocol which was peer-reviewed by subject matter experts including Highwood Emissions. Another critical component of the TrustWell assessment, our Freshwater Program developed with Colorado State University, was released in 2021. In the coming weeks, we will also release our environmental assessment protocol and low emission rating for the Midstream.

TrustWell is the most accurate engineering-based assessment of operations, risk management, and GHG (Greenhouse Gas) emission impacts on the market – giving operators a pathway to benchmark performance, drive continuous improvement, and truly quantify environmental impacts. We are excited to meet the calls for transparency head-on with our fully published protocol. This work isn’t easy, but together we can drive real, positive change for the industry and build the trust needed to grow the market to the next level.

Max Goff, Head of Environmental Assessments

About Project Canary

Project Canary is an enterprise emissions data platform that helps energy leaders identify, measure, understand, and act on GHG emissions. They provide software visualization tools, high-fidelity sensor solutions, and rigorous environmental assessments. Their solutions enable companies to improve operations, differentiate their molecules, and meet regulatory and voluntary framework requirements.
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