U.S. bolsters climate efforts with methane rule and aid at summit

At the U.N. climate summit, Vice President Kamala Harris announced increased U.S. aid for developing nations to address climate change, coinciding with new methane regulations.

Jim Tankersley and Lisa Friedman report for The New York Times.


In short:

  • Enhanced U.S. financial commitment and groundbreaking methane emission regulations announced.
  • Vice President Harris stresses the imperative of curbing global temperature increases.
  • Introduction of rules requiring oil and gas industry to find and eliminate methane leaks marks a significant shift in environmental strategy and policy.

Key quote:

Fred Krupp, president of the Environmental Defense Fund, called the policy “the most impactful climate rule that the United States has ever adopted in terms of addressing temperatures we would otherwise see.”

Why this matters:

These measures could be a crucial step in mitigating climate change's impact on public health, particularly by reducing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. However, activists are pushing the U.S., which has recently increased oil and gas production, to go much further. They also question the Biden administration's ability to make good on the commitment, given that Congress must approve the funding.

Were you aware that methane emissions are vastly undercounted because industry misses accidental leaks from oil and gas wells?

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