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EPA should protect climate, public health with new methane rule

Public Citizen Urges EPA to Adopt Stronger Climate Rules

Public Citizen Urges EPA to Adopt Stronger Climate Rules

HOUSTON – This week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is accepting public comment on its new proposed methane standards for nearly one million oil and gas wells and other facilities. The new rule would extend for the first time to hundreds of thousands of older emitting facilities and strengthen leak monitoring. It’s an important step toward reducing this potent greenhouse gas, but the EPA can – and should – do more. Stephanie Thomas, Public Citizen’s Houston-based researcher and organizer, issued the following statement:

“Failing to eliminate methane pollution will have catastrophic consequences for our health and our communities. To strengthen the rule, the EPA needs to eliminate flaring, a wasteful practice that emits a host of health and climate-harming pollutants alongside methane. In Texas, we need the EPA’s help to make methane pollution a thing of the past. Texas leads the U.S. in oil production and methane pollution. Texas industrial facilities, including oil and gas wells, emit more than 50 million metric tons of methane pollution.

“The EPA needs to strengthen monitoring requirements for smaller, high-polluting wells. Methane is fueling the climate crisis and harming the health of communities. EPA should strengthen the proposed standards, end routine flaring, and enact these changes without delay.”