Oil and gas industry greenhouse gas emissions are on the rise, but methane leakage continues to fall, according to an Environmental Protection Agency report released on Tuesday, Pamela King reported for EnergyWire. “Petroleum and natural gas systems emitted 236 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent into the atmosphere in 2014, up from 228 million metric tons CO2e in 2013,” King wrote. “Methane emissions ticked down from 77 million metric tons CO2e in 2013 to 73 million metric tons CO2e last year, marking the third consecutive year that measurement has declined.”
Matt Watson, associate vice president of the Environmental Defense Fund’s climate and energy program told King that methane reductions are likely the result of existing regulations. He added that further reductions would require new rules to be put in place.
Watson said in a statement, “This data shows that regulations work and promises of voluntary action don’t. The largest methane reductions come from a practice that is subject to national standards, while the biggest increases come from sources that remain largely unregulated.”