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The challenge

Fugitive emissions

Fugitive emissions are losses, leaks and other releases of gases such as methane and carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere that are associated with industries producing natural gas, oil and coal.

All coal seams contain some level of gas as a consequence of how the coal is formed. These gases escape (thus becoming fugitive) during both open-cut and underground mining operations.

Fugitive mine emissions are a significant component of greenhouse gas emissions. Mine methane emissions account for approximately 8% of total global anthropogenic methane emissions.

In addition to environmental concerns, methane a highly explosive gas and a serious safety concern in coal mining, since methane is explosive at a concentration between 5-15%.

Our response

Capture, concentrate or destroy

We use a multidisciplinary approach to tackle the complexity of containing and capturing fugitive methane and CO2 emissions.

Integrating knowledge and techniques in geomechanics, geophysics, groundwater and coal seam gas, we have been able to gain insights into the fundamental problems coal mines face associated with fugutive emissons.

Leveraging our expertise and knowledge we are then able to develop effective and innovative solutions to suit specific mine issues to reduce fugitive emissions and increase mine safety. 

 This includes:

  • evaluating mine specific issues, using technologies we have developed, to obtain in-depth understanding of mining induced rock, groundwater and gas interactions
  • developing and implementing a suite of world-leading methane capture technologies, and
  • demonstrating expertise in redesigning mines to improve mine drainage.

Fugitive emissions abatement case studies

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