WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration finalized New Source Performance Standards Thursday for oil and gas companies. The changes will allow the industry to release methane at sites across the country with little to no accountability. Methane, which is a commonly released gas during the extraction of fossil fuels, is a highly dangerous greenhouse gas that is 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
Anya Fetcher, Environment Maine State Director, issued the following statement:
“It is unconscionable that the current Environmental Protection Agency is piling on yet another rollback to its catastrophic record of environmental deregulation. From the giant methane cloud floating across to Florida to the ongoing release of this dangerous gas from the massive Permian Basin of Texas, the oil and gas industry has clearly demonstrated that what we really need is stronger methane regulations rather than less accountability.
“With this reckless decision, the Trump administration will ratchet up the volume of a dangerous, planet-warming gas in communities across the country for years to come. Maine is particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and we are already feeling the effects. The Gulf of Maine is warming faster than 99 percent of the world’s oceans, causing changes to ecosystems, threatening wildlife, and putting coastal industries and communities in jeopardy. Not to mention warmer winters, stronger storms, and sea-level rise. We can’t afford to make things even worse for our children and grandchildren.
“The EPA has known since at least 2009 that methane endangers public health and welfare. We will not stand for the federal government siding with polluters who are harming the American people.”