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Flaring, or Why So Much Gas Is Going Up in Flames: QuickTake

Aug. 30, 2019, 1:21 PM

If you take a drive along the well-worn highways of West Texas, orange flames will punctuate your journey. Those are gas flares, and they’re lighting up the skies above West Texas oilfields like never before as drillers produce crude faster than pipes can be laid to haul the attendant natural gas away.

Oil drillers say flaring is the most environmentally friendly way to get rid of excess gas they can’t sell. Environmentalists say that in many cases what flaring is friendly to is oil drillers’ profits. They think regulators in states including Texas and North Dakota should be tougher ...