IEA: Methane Emissions Must Be Slashed for Future of Climate, Industry

Statement by Fred Krupp, Environmental Defense Fund President

October 23, 2017
Lauren Whittenberg, (512) 691-3437,

The International Energy Agency today previewed data from its 2017 World Energy Outlook evaluating the role of natural gas in a low-carbon economy. New IEA analysis finds that globally, the oil and gas industry can feasibly reduce up to 75 percent of its current methane emissions. Methane, the main constituent in natural gas, is also a powerful climate pollutant that has increasingly alarmed scientists. IEA says the environmental credentials of natural gas are at risk absent action by the industry to radically reduce oil and gas methane emissions.


“Methane emissions from human activities account for about 25% of the warming our planet is experiencing today. IEA’s thorough and thoughtful analysis makes clear that the oil and gas industry is a major source of these emissions, and that it is also possible to reduce them by 75% with technologies and practices that are available to the industry right now.


“While some oil and gas companies are beginning to tackle methane in earnest, others continue to downplay or deny this problem. Many people already question whether the oil and gas industry have a constructive role to play in a low-carbon future. A failure to drastically reduce methane emissions when it is straightforward to do so only serves to reinforce those doubts.”


- Fred Krupp, President, Environmental Defense Fund

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