Curbelo, Veasey Introduce Bipartisan Methane Emissions Research Bill to Help Reduce Leaks  

The Methane Emissions Mitigation Act would drive down the cost of leak detection technology and decrease environmental impact

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Washington, D.C., June 9, 2017 | Joanna Rodriguez (202-225-2778) | comments

As part of an effort to increase efficient natural gas production and reduce environmental harm, Representatives Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) and Marc Veasey (D-TX), introduced bipartisan legislation to spur innovation in methane leak detection and mitigation technologies.

Methane is the primary component of natural gas, which is used to heat and power millions of homes every day. Utilizing natural gas as a power source instead of coal can dramatically decrease greenhouse gas emissions. Yet despite its benefits, the methane leaks that sometimes occur as part of production and transmission have a negative environmental impact due to gas’s heightened heat trapping capability when compared to carbon dioxide.

The Methane Emissions Mitigation Act, H.R. 2830, addresses the technological challenges impeding effective methane leak detection by increasing research and development funding at the Department of Energy (DOE) to help spur private sector innovation through awards for breakthrough technologies, and establishes a technology clearinghouse at the DOE for innovators to share technological advances and best practices to address escaped emissions with stakeholders.  

“Methane leaks pose great challenges for the environment, and when they occur on public lands, they also rob American taxpayers of lost royalty payments,” Curbelo said. “This timely legislation is a commonsense solution to combat GHG emissions and protect U.S. taxpayers.”

“Methane leaks are a problem for oil and gas producers who work to bring natural gas into the market, as well as for environmentalists who want to reduce emissions in order to fight climate change,” said Veasey. “Our legislation will start to chip away at the high costs and current limits of leak detection technologies in order to increase efficient production while reducing emissions.”

A PDF of the legislation is available here.

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