Obama administration announces partnership with 41 comanies - Smart Energy Decisions

GHG Emissions, Industrial  -  April 1, 2016

SoCalGas among 41 founding partners of EPA's new voluntary emission reduction program

Forty-one energy companies, primarily utilities, have signed on as founding partners to a new, voluntary program from the U.S. EPA designed to reduce methane emissions in the oil and gas sectors. 

The "Natural Gas STAR Methane Challenge Program" builds upon the Natural Gas STAR Program, a flexible, voluntary partnership between EPA and the U.S. oil and natural gas industry that focuses on achieving cost-effective methane emission reductions from natural gas operations, the EPA said in a news release. Methane is upwards of 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide in warming the planet.

The list of companies contains mostly gas utilities includes Sempra Energy subsidiary Southern California Gas, which has been in the news constantly following a four-month natural gas leak at its Aliso Canyon storage field. The leak, which released 97,100 metric tons of methane into the California air, according to a recent New York Times story, has been called the worst man-made greenhouse-gas disaster in U.S. history. 

Other founding parties for the EPA program include Ameren Illinois, Consolidated Edison Company of New York Energy, Duke Energy, The Laclede Group,  MidAmerican Energy Company, National Grid and TransCanada Pipelines Ltd.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said in a statement that the program is "one important part of our overarching strategy to reduce methane emissions," and complements regulatory efforts that will help the U.S. meet the Obama Administration's goal of reducing methane emissions by 40% to 45% by 2025.


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