When you drill for oil, you also get gas. In an ideal world this associated gas would be sold to consumers, or it would be used to generate power and then resold as electricity. But this requires costly investment into pipelines, power plants, and other infrastructure. Some oil producers opt to sell the oil and burn the gas. This is known as gas flaring. Every year, approximately 140–150 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas is flared into the atmosphere. According to calculations by the World Bank, that's equivalent to three quarters of Russia's gas exports, or almost one third of the European Union's gas consumption.

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