Big Oil Is Backing Methane Regulation

The oil industry has suddenly grown concerned about its methane emissions.

In Houston, Shell executives urged the EPA to stick with federal regulations on methane. EOG Resources has agreed to methane targets at the behest of its own shareholders. BP’s CEO Bob Dudley made a big show of support for action on climate change, as well as a more open approach to the way the oil industry does business. Meanwhile, the Trump administration is rolling back methane limits at the federal level.

Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas, as much as 80 times more powerful than carbon dioxide over a shorter time period. Methane can leak from pipelines and processing facilities during the extraction and shipment of natural gas. While the oil and gas industry has opposed federal regulations on methane emissions, some are warming up to the idea.