COP26: US to stop methane leaks from oil and gas wells

The United States is expected to reveal plans to prevent millions of tonnes of methane from entering the environment.

Methane seeping from oil and gas sites across the United States will be targeted by the measures.

It’s one of the most potent greenhouse gases, accounting for a third of the current warming caused by human activity.

On Tuesday, during the COP26 climate meeting in Glasgow, a global collaboration to reduce methane will be revealed.

Dozens of countries have joined the US-led and EU-led plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 30% by 2030 compared to 2020 levels. China, Russia, and India, which are among the world’s largest methane emitters, are not among them.

Carbon dioxide (CO2), which is emitted as a result of human activities such as electricity generation and forest clearing, is at the centre of attempts to reduce global warming.

However, methane is becoming increasingly popular as a means of purchasing more time to address climate change.

Individual methane molecules have a stronger warming effect on the climate than single CO2 molecules, despite the fact that there is more CO2 in the atmosphere and it stays there for longer.

Mr. Biden will make his announcement at a summit in Glasgow, where governments are seeking to come up with strategies to limit global warming and avoid a climate disaster by the end of the century.

According to the White House, the oil and gas industry is the greatest industrial source of methane emissions in the United States, accounting for roughly 30% of total methane emissions.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will propose new regulations under the Methane Emissions Reduction Action Plan that will broaden and strengthen methane emission reduction for new oil and gas plants.

However, it will propose laws requiring states to make plans to cut methane emissions from existing sources across the country, including over 300,000 oil and gas well sites.

An “aggressive” plan would plug abandoned orphan oil and gas wells, many of which are still leaking methane.

New safety measures would be implemented to strengthen requirements for methane leaks from the country’s 3 million miles (4.8 million km) of pipelines, and methane waste burning at drilling sites on public land would be prohibited.

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