Regulators are under growing pressure to control methane emissions from oil and gas operations, the U.S. Environmental Defense Fund reports.
“Cutting methane from the oil and gas sector is particularly important for slowing the rate of climate change,” Symons writes. “About one-quarter of the warming we are experiencing today is a result of methane, and the oil and gas sector is the largest industrial source of methane emissions in the nation.”
While methane is a shorter-lived greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, it’s far more potent. “During the first 20 years of life of a child born today, a ton of methane will have 80 times the warming impact as a ton of carbon dioxide,” he notes. “Cutting methane leaks from the oil and gas system in half would reduce