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Fugitive emissions

New EU regulations mandate that fugitive emissions must be measured, reported and controlled

NPL offers a complete solution for monitoring your fugitive emissions

The latest update to the EU Refineries BREF mandated that fugitive emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the refining of mineral oil and gas must be measured, reported and controlled.

Refineries will need to implement the BREF BAT conclusions, and the national regulators will be implementing the changes through the permits.

NPL offers a suite of services designed to help you locate and quantify all types of fugitive emissions, using technologies recommended within the Best Available Techniques (BAT) conclusions, including Differential Absorption Lidar (DIAL) and Optical Gas Imaging (OGI).

Our experts can discuss a range of solutions that would work for your company.

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Comprehensive monitoring solutions

Using our experience in monitoring fugitive and stack emissions in challenging refinery or other oil and gas environments, we have commercially available offerings with the capability to monitor diffuse and fugitive emissions across your entire site.

NPL Differential Absorption Lidar (DIAL)
DIAL is a remote sensing technique that provides rapid, accurate measurements of atmospheric pollutants through real-time 3D emissions maps at ranges of up to 600 m. The system is a self-contained mobile laboratory that can be deployed anywhere it is needed. Unlike techniques which rely on sunlight (SOF and OGI), DIAL works in all weather conditions and at any time of the day or night. Dial can differentiate between background levels of VOCs and those coming from specific operational processes. It also provides full spatial data of emissions, to bring more confidence in decision making. Find out more

Optical gas imaging
We offer a range of leak detection capabilities, including sniffing and optical gas imaging (OGI). We can carry out walk over surveys and also combine OGI with other complementary techniques, such as DIAL. This can provide component level leak location combined with localised and site level emission quantification.

Hi-flow sampler

We also deploy hi-flow samplers to quantify individual leaks identified using other techniques. This 'virtual bagging' technique quantifies emissions from individual leaking components. This provides additional data for reporting and enables quantification of the emission reduction from leak repair.

Fugitive emission detection system 

NPL have developed a system to provide long term monitoring of methane emissions from industrial sites. The Fugitive Emission Detection System (FEDS) samples methane emissions from multiple locations around the site and measures them in near real-time, using state-of-the-art fast response gas analysers. These measurements are combined with daily reverse dispersion modelling, based on a Lagrangian multiple particle model, to locate probable fugitive emission locations. Once these locations are identified the model calculates the emission rates required to generate the concentrations measured. This provides reliable long term monitoring of site emissions even if the distribution of sources changes during the measurement period.


To find out more about our comprehensive monitoring solutions, please get in touch:

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Fugitive emission technique validation

In addition to offering a range of fugitive emission measurement solutions, NPL operates a unique set of capabilities for the field validation of different emission detection and measurement techniques. They can be used to:

  • validate the monitoring services offered by NPL
  • help innovative companies and end users develop new monitoring technologies
  • support standardisation bodies assess the performance of different techniques for specific applications

We have the ability to replicate the release rates, spatial distributions and the temporal variability of emissions that are encountered in real world measurement scenarios. We can also create specific test conditions to ensure your measurements are fully validated.

Fugitive emission technique validation

Leading the industry

NPL promotes discussion of testing and standards related to fugitive emissions and is proud to be leading the science content at key events. We are keen to give industry the opportunity to compare capabilities, discuss challenges and review emerging technologies for monitoring methane.

Upcoming events that we are actively supporting include:

Conference and Exhibition for Emissions Monitoring in India 24-26 September 2019

International Conference and Exhibition on Emissions Monitoring 13-15 May 2020, Poland

We set the standard

NPL is leading the development of the European standards for monitoring fugitive and diffuse emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The standard covers the monitoring techniques recommended in the BREF, and the services we offer are compliant with that standard.

Your compliance partner

We have over 30 years' experience in commercial monitoring of emissions across refinery installations. We also offer a comprehensive suite of emissions monitoring services, from rapid tracking of small, localised leaks to the Best Available Techniques for reporting on fugitive emissions across your sites. We will help you plan your route to compliance with confidence. Our services are validated by measurement and backed by NPL pedigree.

The Medium Combustion Plant Directive (MCPD)

MCPD came into force at the end of 2018 and applies to generators and plants between 1 and 50 MW and is estimated that between 30,000 and 35,000 of these plants are currently operating in the UK.  This new Directive will have wide impact, so it is vitally important that industry is fully aware of the requirements and how to implement them. NPL can provide testing and advice to ensure compliance.

Get in touch to discover what these changes mean to your business and the range of solutions available.

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Environmental monitoring services

Find out more about our range of sophisticated remote sensing systems that provide rapid, accurate measurements of airborne atmospheric pollutants.  

Environmental monitoring

Our expertise

NPL undertakes focused research and development, as well as providing services and bespoke consultancy in the following areas: