Stefan Schwietzke

Stefan Schwietzke

International Senior Scientist


Areas of expertise: Methane emissions, atmospheric measurements, local and global emissions inventories

As an international senior scientist, Stefan combines his analytical skills, diverse professional background, and collaborative spirit to help understand and solve complex environmental issues. His current research focuses on methane emissions from different sources at different scales: from local to global, which requires the application of different analytical methods in terms of measurement platforms and data analysis. As Methane Science Studies Programme Manager at UNEP’s International Methane Emissions Observatory (IMEO), he co-leads the scientific coordination of a global set of measurement studies to characterize anthropogenic methane emission sources, including study identification and development. 


Stefan was also previously a Research Scientist at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s Global Monitoring Division and the University of Colorado’s Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences in Boulder, CO. In addition to academic positions, he has worked in large corporations and business consulting.

Ph.D. in Engineering and Public Policy – Carnegie Melon University M.S. in Technology Management - University of Stuttgart, Germany B.S. in Mechanical Engineering - University of Stuttgart, Germany


Milkov, A., Schwietzke, S., Allen, G. et al. Using global isotopic data to constrain the role of shale gas production in recent increases in atmospheric methane. Sci Rep 10, 4199 (2020). Full text.

Ganesan, A., Schwietzke, S., Poulter, B., Arnold, T., Lan, X., Rigby, M., et al. (2019). Advancing scientific understanding of the global methane budget in support of the Paris Agreement. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 33, 1475–1512. Full text.

Etiope, G and Schwietzke, S. 2019. Global geological methane emissions: An update of top-down and bottom-up estimates. Elem Sci Anth, 7: 47. Full text.

Lan, X., Tans, P., Sweeney, C., Andrews, A., Dlugokencky, E., Schwietzke, S., et al. (2019) Long-term measurements show little evidence for large increases in total U.S. methane emissions over the past decade. Geophys. Res. Lett., 46, 4991–4999. Full text.

Mielke-Maday, I., Schwietzke, S., et al. (2019) Methane source attribution in a U.S. dry gas basin using spatial patterns of ground and airborne ethane and methane measurements. Elem. Sci. Anth., 7:13. Full text.

Zaimes, G., Littlefield, J., Augustine, D., Cooney, G., Schwietzke, S., et al. (2019) Characterizing Regional Methane Emissions from Natural Gas Liquids Unloading. Environ. Sci. Technol. 53 (8), 4619-4629. Full text.

Miller, S., Michalak, A., Detmers, R., Hasekamp, O., Bruhwiler, L., Schwietzke, S. (2019) China’s coal mine methane regulations have not curbed growing emissions. Nature Communications 10, 303. Full text.

Etiope, G., Ciotoli, G., Schwietzke, S., Schoell, S. (2019) Gridded maps of geological methane emissions and their isotopic signature. Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 11, 1–22. Full text.

Vaughn, T., Bell, C., Pickering, C., Schwietzke, S., et al. (2018) Temporal variability largely explains top-down/bottom-up difference in methane emission estimates from a natural gas production region. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 115 (46) 11712-11717. Full text.

Schwietzke, S., Harrison, M., Lauderdale, T., Branson, K., Conley, S., et al. (2018) Aerially-guided leak detection and repair: A pilot field study for evaluating the potential of methane emission detection and cost-effectiveness. J. Air Waste Manag. Assoc. 69 (1), 71-88. Full text.

Dalsøren, T., Myhre, G., Hodnebrog, O., Lund Myhre, C., Stohl, A., Pisso, I., Schwietzke, S., et al. (2018) Discrepancy between simulated and observed ethane and propane levels explained by underestimated fossil fuel emissions. Nature Geoscience 11, 178–184. Full text.

Feinberg, A., Coulon, A., Stenke, A., Schwietzke, S., Peter, T. (2017) Isotopic source signatures: impact of regional variability on the δ13CH4 trend and spatial distribution. Atmos. Env., 174, 99–111. Full text.

Johnson, M., Tyner, D., Conley, S., Schwietzke, S., Zavala-Araiza, D. (2017) Comparisons of Airborne Measurements and Inventory Estimates of Methane Emissions in the Alberta Upstream Oil and Gas Sector. Environ. Sci. Technol. 51 (21), 13008–13017. Full text.

Vaughn, T., Bell, C., Yacovitch, T., Roscioli, J., Herndon, S., Conley, S., Schwietzke, S., Heath, G., Pétron, G., Zimmerle, D. (2017) Comparing facility-level methane emission rate estimates at natural gas gathering and boosting stations. Elem. Sci. Anth. 5:71. Full text.

Schwietzke, S., Petron, G., Conley, S., Pickering, C., Mielke-Maday, I., Dlugokencky, E., Tans, P., et al. (2017) Improved mechanistic understanding of natural gas methane emissions from spatially-resolved aircraft measurements. Environ. Sci. Technol. 51 (12), 7286–7294. Full text.

Sherwood, O., Schwietzke, S., Arling, V., Etiope, G. (2017) Global inventory of gas geochemistry data from fossil fuel, microbial and biomass burning sources, Version 2017. Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 9, 639-656, 2017. Full text.

Conley, S., Faloona, I., Mehrotra, S., Suard, M., Lenschow, D., Sweeney, D., Herndon, S., Schwietzke, S., Pétron, G., Pifer, J., Kort, E., Schnell, R. (2017) Application of Gauss’s Theorem to quantify localized surface emissions from airborne measurements of wind and trace gases. Atmos. Meas. Tech. Disc., DOI:10.5194/amt-2017-55. Full text.

Smith, M., Kort, E., Gvakharia, A., Sweeney, C., Conley, S., Faloona, I., Newberger, T., Schnell, R., Schwietzke, S., Wolter, S. (2017) Airborne quantification of methane emissions over the Four Corners region. Environ. Sci. Technol. 51 (10), 5832–5837. Full text.

Barkley, Z., Lauvaux, T., Davis, K., Deng, A., Cao, Y., Sweeney, C., Martins, D., Miles, N., Richardson, S., Murphy, T., Cervone, G., Karion, A., Schwietzke, S., Smith, M., Kort, E., Maasakkers, J. (2017) Quantifying methane emissions from natural gas production in northeastern Pennsylvania. Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., DOI:10.5194/acp-2017-200. Full text.

Bruhwiler, L., Basu, S., Bergamaschi, P., Bousquet, P., Dlugokencky, E., Houweling, S., Ishizawa, M., Kim, H., Locatelli, R., Maksyutov, S., Montzka, S., Pandey, S., Patra, P., Pétron, G., Saunois, M., Sweeney, C., Schwietzke, S., et al. (2017) U.S. CH4 emissions from oil and gas production: have recent large increases been detected? J. Geophys. Res. Atmos. 122 (7), 4070–4083. Full text.

Schwietzke, S., Sherwood, O., Bruhwiler L., Miller, J., Etiope, G., Dlugokencky E., et al. (2016) Upward revision of global fossil fuel methane emissions based on isotopic database. Nature 538, 88-91. Full text.