New York State unveils plan to slash methane

The State of New York has released a plan to reduce methane emissions from its landfill, oil and gas and agricultural sectors. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the suite of […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

The State of New York has released a plan to reduce methane emissions from its landfill, oil and gas and agricultural sectors.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the suite of 25 actions last week and said they would complement the state’s goal of reducing energy sector emissions by 40% by 2030.

The plans, which aim to lower methane emissions, establish more robust monitoring methods, increase support and knowledge sharing and improve stakeholder involvement, are to be implemented by 2020.

Methane is second only to carbon dioxide in its contribution to climate change. Representing almost 10% of the state’s annual greenhouse gas emissions, methane reduction is key to help protect New York State from climate change.

The plan will pursue methane reductions at landfill sites, limit methane emissions from oil and gas infrastructure, support the capture and combustion of methane gas where it is emitted and develop reduction criteria in state-funded agricultural programmes.

It will also aim to deploy methane detection systems to enhance detection of leaks in residential areas and incentivise utilities and customers to help flag these issues.

Assemblyman Steve Englebright, Chair of the Assembly Committee on Environmental Conservation, said: “Methane is one of the most potent greenhouse gases and the second largest contributor to climate change.

“The multi-sector approach to methane reduction is an essential part of the process to meet the state’s emission reduction goals. By understanding where the emissions are coming from, we can create effective, targeted plans to minimise or eliminate them.”