Feds aim to cut methane pollution by 40 percent in next 10 years
A federal plan to cut methane pollution from fossil fuel operations on public lands will get a public hearing in the Denver area next week, and the forum will be live-streamed to ensure maximum public access.
The meeting starts at 1 p.m. on March 1 at the Holiday Inn, 7390 W. Hampden Ave., Lakewood, CO 80227. View the livestream at www.blm.gov/live. Call in to the meeting at 1-888-469-3312 and enter password 2011952#. You must use the call-in number if you wish to ask a question or make a statement. You can also access the PowerPoint the BLM will present at the meeting at http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/energy/public_events_on_oil.html.
Between 2009 and 2014, enough natural gas was lost through venting, flaring and leaks to power more than five million homes for a year. States, Tribes and federal taxpayers also lose royalty revenues when natural gas is wasted. According to a 2010 Government Accountability Office report, taxpayers lose up to $23 million annually in royalty revenue.
The Department of Interior wants oil and gas producers to use existing technology to limit flaring, and to conduct more regular inspections for leaks. Some equipment upgrades would also be required. Operators would also be required to limit venting from storage tanks and use best practices to limit gas losses when removing liquids from wells.
U.S. methane emissions are projected to increase substantially without additional steps to lower them. The proposal announced today is consistent with the Obama Administration’s goal to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 40 – 45 percent from 2012 levels by 2025.