Statement by NPCA Oil and Gas Program Manager Nick Lund
Background: The White House today announced a plan to reduce emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas often released in high quantities from oil and natural gas production. Today’s announcement is a key aspect of the President’s Climate Action Plan, seeking to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent by the year 2020.
Methane is the primary component of natural gas and has an impact on climate change twenty times greater than carbon dioxide over a 100 year period. The White House plan seeks to engage a number of Federal agencies – including the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Agriculture, Department of the Interior, and Department of Energy – to research the threats of methane and find potential new rules and voluntary measures to reduce emissions.
“Today’s announcement recognizes the threat of methane emissions, which impact the air quality and health of our national parks and national park visitors. Air pollution from oil and gas development threatens national parks around the country – from Arches National Park in Utah to Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota to Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area in Pennsylvania and New Jersey – and methane pollution from natural gas drilling sites and leaking pipelines is a big part of that threat.
“Domestic production of natural gas should not be done in a way that harms national parks and other places we hold dear. We applaud the Obama Administration on its efforts to address emissions of this potent greenhouse gas from oil and gas production, and hope that the Administration will eventually enact strong rules to control the venting and flaring of natural gas from drilling sites, and to prevent leaks from pipelines.”
About National Parks Conservation Association
Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its more than one million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s natural, historical, and cultural heritage for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.