January 26, 2015

Methane — the EPA’s Newest Bogeyman

Stephen Moore: “Recently the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced major new regulations on the emissions of methane into the air from oil and gas production. … [M]ethane is just another term for the main component of natural gas. … Not only is methane nontoxic (propaganda notwithstanding), but methane emissions are way down over the last seven years without these new regulations. Furthermore, the reductions correspond with a major increase in oil and gas drilling and increased use of fracking technologies. The EPA’s own data confirm this. From 2005 to 2012, methane emissions from natural gas systems have fallen by 15 percent while natural gas marketed production from drilling is up by more than 33 percent. … So why is the methane scare so elevated now by Big Green? One reason might be that almost all of the major air pollutants have declined markedly over the last several decades, so environmental groups need to invent new scare tactics to fill up their coffers. The emissions of lead, sulfur and smog have all fallen by at least half since 1970. The air in major American cities such as Pittsburgh, Los Angeles and Chicago are as clean as they’ve been in many decades. Big Green is running out of things to complain about.”

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