EPA to cut methane from oil and gas sector

EPA to cut methane from oil and gas sector

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will reveal a rule to target methane emissions from new or modified oil and gas facilities today.

This will be the first type of regulation issued to address the greenhouse gas from the sector. The EPA first suggested the regulation last August and finalised the plan after a public comment period.

The proposal is anticipated to necessitate new and modified oil and gas processing and transmission facilities to find and fix methane leaks, capture natural gas from hydraulically fractured oil wells and limit emissions from pumps and other types of equipment.

Methane is the second most widespread greenhouse gas after carbon monoxide. It is 84 times more powerful than carbon dioxide at trapping heat, though it only lasts for 20 years in the atmosphere.

Environmental groups have pressed the administration for firmer restriction on leaks.

Cutting methane will also help the US reach the goal it pledged in the Paris climate change agreement to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by up to 28 per cent by 2030.