Today, the Center for Methane Emissions Solutions (CMES) launched a digital ad campaign in the Salt Lake Tribune. The ads are aimed at Senator Mitt Romney, urging him to restore rules to cut methane pollution and support Senate Joint Resolution 14.
The bipartisan joint resolution, led by Senator Martin Heinrich in the U.S. Senate, puts methane, a potent greenhouse gas released alongside oil and gas operations, back into the national spotlight. If passed, this measure, which is also supported by leading oil and gas companies, would invoke the Congressional Review Act and provide the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with a clean slate to restore commonsense, cost-effective rules to cut methane waste adopted in 2016. The joint resolution is on a fast track in the Senate, with a final vote set to take place before the end of April.
“The Congressional Review Act would reinstitute common-sense methane rules that were thoughtfully developed with one simple vote,” said Isaac Brown, Executive Director of the Center for Methane Emissions Solutions. “Reducing methane pollution from the oil and gas industry is the single fastest, most cost-effective way to slow the rate of warming today, that is also good for business. Congress must act now to restore common-sense methane waste safeguards.”
This ad campaign seizes on growing, bipartisan support for reducing methane emissions from oil and gas operations , including from the industry itself. A growing number of leading oil and gas companies, including Shell, BP, Equinor, EQT, Total, Jonah Energy, Cheniere, Equitrans Midstream, and the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America have released statements in support of the methane joint resolution. Others in industry such as XTO/ExxonMobil, Pioneer, and even API have come out in support of federal methane regulations after acknowledging that regulation of methane pollution will provide certainty and reduce concerns about their operations.
In 2016, the U.S. EPA adopted regulations to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas industry. The regulations required mitigation measures, such as requiring operators to inspect their equipment periodically for leaks and malfunctions, for new and modified facilities. In 2020, the agency reversed course and adopted provisions that wrote methane out of the rules and exempted vast swaths of the supply chain from all regulation, despite widespread opposition even from within the oil and gas industry.