Your Comment Needed By Jan 31 to Curb Potent Greenhouse Gas

We have only a few more days to tell the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that the oil and gas industry must be held accountable for fueling the climate crisis. As people across the country are impacted by climate disruption, now is the time to slash methane pollution from oil and gas drilling

One example of the vast methane pollution problem comes from the oil and gas industry in the Permian Basin area in west Texas and eastern New Mexico. Over a three-year period, 30 methane super-emitters in the region were exposed for spewing the same amount of climate disrupting pollution as half a million cars each year

These 30 sites account for only .001 percent of the oil and gas infrastructure in the Permian Basin, and are just a few of many oil and gas drilling sites in the US. For years, the oil and gas drilling industry has been allowed to pollute unchecked. Fortunately, the EPA has proposed a rule to cut methane and other harmful air pollutants from oil and gas drilling. It’s a good step forward, and even more can be done.

Oil and gas infrastructure is more than a drilling rig and a well pad. These sites can include pipelines, compressor stations, and processing facilities. In the Permian Basin study, aerial survey technology was used to see and measure methane pollution. What is invisible to the human eye was captured on camera as plumes of pollution spewing from each facility.

The oil and gas industry must be held to a higher standard, and the EPA’s proposed rule is a good start. For the first time, there would be federal oil and gas methane standards for existing equipment and a requirement for zero-emission controllers. However, there’s more to be done. The current proposal allows a significant number of wells to skip regular inspections needed to detect and repair leaking equipment. The proposal also would not stop oil wells from routinely flaring gas. The EPA must do more to close any loopholes that allow for more climate-disrupting pollution.

Last fall, President Biden joined over 100 countries and pledged to cut methane emissions 30% by 2030. This is in large part thanks to activists speaking up for methane pollution protections. Now is the time to take another step forward to rein in an industry that values profits over our future.

Take action and tell EPA administrator Michael Regan that there is no time to waste in tackling the climate crisis. The last day to share your comment is January 31.