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Satellite to ‘name and shame’ worst oil and gas methane polluters

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: A satellite named MethaneSat, designed to identify and publicly expose the most significant methane emitters in the oil and gas industry, is set to launch from California
• This satellite aims to provide a detailed, almost global perspective on methane leaks, which are a major contributor to climate change, with all data being made publicly available

🔭 The context: Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, accounts for 30% of global warming
• The Environmental Defense Fund, in partnership with the New Zealand Space Agency, developed MethaneSat at a cost of $88 million
• This initiative comes as over 150 countries have pledged to reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030, highlighting a global commitment to address this issue

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Methane leaks from the oil and gas sector are a significant source of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions
• Addressing these leaks is deemed the quickest way to mitigate global temperature rises, underlining the critical role MethaneSat plays in global environmental conservation and climate change mitigation efforts

⏭️ What's next: With the deployment of MethaneSat, there is an expectation for enhanced accountability and reduction efforts within the oil and gas industry
• This satellite's high-resolution data will also support regulatory efforts in the US, EU, Japan, and South Korea, aiming to significantly reduce methane emissions

💬 One quote: "MethaneSat is a tool for accountability... But [it] can [also] help document progress that leading companies are making in reducing their emissions," (Mark Brownstein, EDF’s senior vice-president)

📈 One stat: Methane emissions from planes were found to be 60% higher than the estimates published by US authorities and elsewhere, emphasizing the underreported magnitude of this issue

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