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Wenonah Hauter: Methane Reductions Will Not Hold Off Growing Climate Crisis

Climate
Wenonah Hauter: Methane Reductions Will Not Hold Off Growing Climate Crisis

Today the Obama Administration released proposed regulations to directly regulate methane leaks from the oil and gas industry. If adopted, these regulations would wrongly promote natural gas as a "clean" alternative to oil and coal. These weak regulations leave the impression that pursuing natural gas benefits the environment, providing a justification for continuing to drill and frack.

Regulating methane will not address fracking’s carbon dioxide footprint and fracking must be entirely halted if we are to avoid the worst of the expected impacts from global warming.
Photo credit: Shutterstock

Besides contaminating water and causing earthquakes, drilling and fracking for gas is impacting the global climate.

Implementing the proposed methane reductions could not possibly hold off the growing climate crisis. Methane leaks are seriously underreported and will increase as fracking is expanded.

Even if only carbon dioxide emissions from natural gas are considered, we must keep fracked gas in the ground. Regulating methane will not address fracking’s carbon dioxide footprint and fracking must be entirely halted if we are to avoid the worst of the expected impacts from global warming.

A serious program for curbing climate change, means President Obama needs to move aggressively to keep fossil fuels in the ground, stop promoting expanded drilling and fracking, and do everything in his power to accelerate the transition to a 100 percent renewable energy economy.

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