Thursday, March 25, 2021
Contact: Camilla Feibelman, Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter
Statements on Congressional Review Act resolution for methane safeguards
On Thursday, Sens. Heinrich, King, and Markey and Majority Leader Schumer introduced a resolution in the Senate and U.S. Reps. DeGette, Peters, and Lamb introduced a resolution in the House that would reinstate the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2016 methane pollution safeguards.
By passing this resolution, Congress will ensure that no future administration could once again strip standards on methane pollution from oil and gas operations.
Once this resolution passes, the Biden administration can build on these standards by cutting methane pollution from new and existing oil and gas operations by 65 percent below 2012 levels in the next five years.
“Methane is one of the most potent climate-heating gases, and cutting methane pollution is one of the most powerful solutions, so this is a needed and meaningful action by Sen. Heinrich and others,” said Camilla Feibelman, Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter director. “As we strive for increased federal safeguards, we look to New Mexico to pass strong statewide reductions in its current rulemaking process.”
“We appreciate congressional leadership taking action to uplift climate and environmental protection by reinstating well-reasoned Environmental Protection Agency methane pollution safeguards,” said Erik Schlenker-Goodrich, executive director of the Western Environmental Law Center. “Reinstating these safeguards is a key step towards cutting 65% of oil and gas methane pollution by 2025 as we transition our country away from fossil fuels and towards a thriving renewable-energy economy.”
“We applaud these Congressional champions for their steadfast commitment to reducing methane pollution from oil and gas development, and putting frontline communities, public health, and the climate first,” said Sierra Club Deputy Legislative Director Mahyar Sorour. “We urge the Biden Administration to follow suit and adopt newly aggressive methane safeguards for all oil and gas sources, including both new and existing equipment. So much is on the line, and swift action is needed to prevent a worsening of the climate crisis.”