(WASHINGTON – November 15, 2016) The U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today finalized new rules to reduce the amount of methane that oil and gas companies leak, vent, and flare on our nation’s public and tribal-owned lands. These new rules are the first national standards that target methane emissions from existing oil and gas sources – reducing waste and pollution. They also set an important precedent for continued action.
Statement from EDF President Fred Krupp
“Natural gas is a valuable American resource, but when wasted into the air it causes dangerous pollution. Reducing the amount of gas that oil and gas operators release will conserve an important domestic resource, improve air quality, lower asthma attacks, and slow climate change.
“The BLM rule has enjoyed bipartisan support in Congress and across the West. This rule shows that reducing waste and protecting taxpayers are issues that can and should cross party lines. In addition, communities across the West have spoken out in support of these rules. Advancements in drilling technology have made it possible for oil and gas companies to cost-effectively cut methane waste. BLM’s efforts will help ensure leading practice becomes the standard practice for any company operating on federal leases.
“BLM is right to address methane waste from existing oil and gas facilities – these actions build on important state and federal progress already underway. But the oil and gas industry remains the largest source of methane pollution in the country, and these efforts alone will not enable the U.S. to reach our goal of reducing 40-45% of these emissions over the next decade.”
· Fred Krupp, President, Environmental Defense Fund
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Environmental Defense Fund (edf.org), a leading international nonprofit organization, creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships.