Press Release

NRDC Statement on Federal Standard for Methane Pollution on Public Lands

WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 22, 2016) – The federal Bureau of Land Management today released a standard to address methane pollution from oil and gas industry operations on public lands.

A statement follows from Meleah Geertsma, Senior Attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council:

“These rules are an important start to reducing potent methane pollution—which fuels climate change and threatens public health—from oil and gas companies operating on our nation’s public lands. However, they fall short of what’s necessary to tackle the full scope of the problem, including leaving significant gas leaks and flaring unaddressed.

“At a minimum, the administration should require the industry to put all of the available and cost-effective measures in place to curb this rampant air pollution problem. That’s true not just for public lands—but all oil and gas operations, new and old, nationwide.

“Moreover, the administration should build on its historic decision to suspend new coal leases on our nation’s publicly owned lands—home to America’s last wild places and drinking water supplies for thousands of people —by banning all new fossil fuel leasing there. Growing the clean energy sources that will power us into the future must be our priority.”

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