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Revolutionizing the Energy Sector: US Pledges $700M to Curb Methane Emissions

A $700 million investment by the US government aims to combat climate change by reducing methane emissions in the oil and gas industry.

Joe Goffman
Joe Goffman

Funding Allocation for Methane Reduction

The US government has pledged to invest up to $700 million to monitor and mitigate methane emissions in the oil and gas sector. Half of this funding will be distributed as grants to states, according to announcements from two government agencies on Monday.

Technical Assistance for Industry Players

In addition to the financial aid, companies operating in this sector will receive technical assistance to help them limit the emission of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. The assistance will address issues such as daily operations and leakages, the US Environmental Protection Agency has stated.

The Environmental Impact of Methane Emissions

"Methane emitted from oil and gas operations could fuel millions of homes annually, and it is a significant contributor to the current climate crisis," said Joe Goffman from EPA's Office of Air and Radiation, emphasizing the severity of the situation.

DOE's Initiative to Reduce Methane Emissions

The US Department of Energy's National Energy Technology Laboratory is set to distribute up to $350 million to states. This initiative aims to encourage companies to voluntarily identify and permanently reduce methane emissions from underperforming wells.

Inviting Bids for Technological Deployments

For the remaining funds, the EPA and the DOE have announced that they will accept bids from tribal governments, private companies, and local communities. The focus of these bids should be the deployment of innovative technologies and the adoption of best practices in the oil and gas industry.

Source of Funding and Expected Impact

This initiative is financed by the Inflation Reduction Act and forms part of a suite of rules introduced by the Biden administration. These rules target emissions from power plants and vehicles, along with other greenhouse gases. According to EPA Administrator Michael Regan, the overall impact of these measures could potentially reduce up to 15 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions between 2022 and 2055.