US – EU Methane Pledge Proposal Should Be Much Stronger

To reduce emissions, governments must end fossil fuel drilling

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Climate and Energy

The United States and the European Union announced a methane pledge that aims to achieve at least 30 percent reductions by 2030 (compared with 2020 levels).

The most recent IPCC report added new urgency to the need to drastically reduce emissions of methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas.

In response, Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter released the following statement: 

“While it is encouraging to see governments’ pledge to take serious action, the emissions target should be much stronger. We know that more aggressive cuts in methane are well within reach over the next decade, and are necessary in order to deal with the climate crisis. There are also serious concerns about how to gauge progress, since agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency have continually underestimated methane emissions. 

“It is equally important that these emissions targets do not include factory farm biogas as a so-called solution to the methane problem. These schemes seek to entrench harmful industrial agriculture practices, or to even encourage their expansion under the guise of climate action. 

“Any plan to reduce methane emissions should start from the root source of the problem: Fossil fuel extraction. Meaningful climate action must be rooted in a rapid shift away from fossil fuels. The Biden administration can and must stop all new fossil fuel projects, including an end to dirty energy exploitation of our public lands. 

“We have known for years that the fracking boom — cheered on by so many political leaders — is creating an increase in methane emissions, water contamination, and air pollution. Instead of merely pledging to do better, governments around the world must put an end to the drilling and fracking that is fueling the climate emergency.”