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U.S. clamps down on oil and gas firms releasing potent greenhouse gas

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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 Washington Post or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: The Biden administration has finalized a rule through the Bureau of Land Management to significantly reduce methane emissions from oil and gas operations on federal and tribal lands
• This measure is part of a broader strategy to combat climate change by addressing methane, a potent greenhouse gas

🔭 The context: Methane, which traps 80 times as much heat as carbon dioxide in the short term, is a major contributor to global warming
• The new rule updates regulations that are 40 years old, aiming to curb accidental leaks, venting, and flaring of methane from the energy sector

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Methane emission reduction is crucial for slowing down climate change due to its high heat-trapping capability
• The rule is expected to conserve billions of cubic feet of gas and generate over $50 million annually in royalties, benefiting the environment and taxpayers

⏭️ What's next: The rule, which aims to prevent wasteful practices and ensure fair compensation for the use of public resources, faces potential challenges
• It could be subject to change or reversal under future administrations, highlighting the ongoing debate over energy policy and environmental regulation

💬 One quote: “The BLM methane rule is important for making sure that we are not wasting publicly owned resources, and that if companies flare or vent methane that belongs to taxpayers, they pay for it,” - Aaron Weiss, Deputy Director of the Center for Western Priorities.

📈 One stat: Between 2010 and 2020, an average of about 44.2 billion cubic feet of gas was vented or flared each year on public and tribal lands, enough to supply energy to approximately 675,000 homes.

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