Editorials

Houston Chronicle: An EPA policy so harmful, even big oil opposes it

Recently, a group called Texans for Natural Gas took the city of Houston to task for not including its namesake fuel in a proposed climate action plan. ‘No climate plan for Houston can be considered legitimate unless it utilizes an abundant, clean burning, and Texas made fuel like natural gas,’ the group’s online petition reads. It’s true that when used to fuel power plants, gas produces about half the carbon dioxide than coal, which is why using it as a bridge to transition more fully to renewable energy sources makes sense. Texas has enjoyed a boom in the production of natural gas thanks to hydraulic fracturing and horizontal-drilling technologies. But natural gas has an Achilles’ heel that must be addressed if the industry wants to be considered a viable part of any climate change strategy: methane emissions.

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Bismarck Tribune: North Dakota needs to find moral compass

North Dakota seems to be losing its way in key areas: care of the elderly, the environment and the oversight of government, to name a few. Our moral compass has gotten out of whack.

This year has seen a number of instances in which our leaders have failed us.

The state has allowed flaring to get out of control. Instead of the oil industry meeting the goal of 12% of natural gas flared, the percentage soared to 24%. There were lengthy explanations for why it happened, but no reasons for why it wasn’t prevented.

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Washington Post: Even The Fossil-Fuel Industry Doesn’t Like The EPA’s Methane Rollback

PRESIDENT TRUMP’S Environmental Protection Agency moved Thursday to lift limits on potent greenhouse gas emissions from the drilling and transportation of natural gas, a major fuel source for electric power plants, heating systems and industrial processes. Not only would this be bad for the environment, but also it might well do more harm than good for the fossil-fuel industry.

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USA Today: Flaring natural gas turns ‘drill, baby, drill’ to ‘burn, baby, burn’

As Europe bakes, wildfires burn in the Arctic Circle and July is shaping up as Earth’s hottest month since record-keeping began in 1880, Americans are becoming more keenly aware of global warming. They increasingly recognize the need to reduce burning fossil fuels that generate heat-trapping greenhouse gases.

Wind and solar are now the fastest growing sources of electricity. Scores of cities, counties and states are setting clean energy goals. Electric car sales are inching higher. Green upstarts are working to capture methane as a renewable fuel from livestock manure and food waste, rather than let it slip into atmosphere.

It might come as a shock that amid this growing sense of planet accountability, oil companies are still allowed to pull billions of cubic feet of natural gas from the ground and simply set it on fire.

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Albuquerque Journal: NM needs more than an old pic to regulate methane

“We can pinpoint emissions down to 20 feet or so from the source to actually see where the leak is coming from. It will be the largest comprehensive survey of methane leaks in an oil field ever done.”

– Kairos co-founder and CEO Steve Deiker

New Mexico has been relying on a 2014 NASA snapshot of the Four Corners when it comes to the issue of methane emissions. And while NASA identified oil and gas field venting, flaring and leaks as the source in 2016, there are those who have blamed natural seeps from underground formations and coal mining operations, as well as bovine burps at the many dairies across the state.

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Albuquerque Journal: Time to regulate methane without killing oil and gas

When it comes to methane, New Mexico is both first and last.

We have the highest concentration of atmospheric methane in the nation — a “hotspot” the size of Delaware over the San Juan Basin, as shown by NASA imagery. And we have the least amount of regulation controlling methane emissions, according to a new study from The Wilderness Society and Taxpayers for Common Sense.

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Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Pennsylvanians speak out against energy pollution

It’s time to clear the air. A new health report has uncovered hazy facts about pollution in Pennsylvania and across the country.

The report, Face to Face with Oil and Gas: Voices from the Front Lines of Oil and Gas Pollution , conducted released by the Moms Clean Air Force, details alarming facts about the impacts of oil and gas pollution across the country.

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The Virginian-Pilot: Halted progress toward healthier air, water

THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION is planning to weaken requirements about how energy companies monitor and repair methane leaks.

This latest proposal from the Environmental Protection Agency is part of a concerted effort by the administration to dismantle reasonable regulations that protect the environment and the people who depend upon it for their health and well-being (in other words, all of us).

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The New York Times: Nature Roars. Washington Hears Nothing.

As if this past summer of merciless heat waves, droughts and megafires were not warning enough, in the past several days the elements sounded another alarm about the state of a world made warmer by the burning of fossil fuels. It came in the form of a one-two punch of wind and rainfall from Hurricane Florence, which like Hurricane Harvey a year ago, has derived much of its wallop from unusually warm ocean waters and stalled weather systems linked to climate change. “Supercharged” is the word one prominent climate scientist, Michael Mann, used to describe Florence, echoing the findings of the federal Global Change report in 2014 that, along with a rise in other extreme weather events, “hurricane intensity and rainfall are projected to increase as the climate continues to warm.”

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Akron Beacon Journal: Trump’s risky retreat on methane emissions

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