Most methane comes from natural sources unrelated to fossil fuels

Washington Times:
The Environmental Protection Agency may have overlooked the real culprits in its recent crackdown on methane emissions from fossil fuels: rice farmers and cows.

A newly released study led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration attributed the increase in global atmospheric methane since 2007 to microbial sources, including rice paddies, livestock, decaying vegetation in wetlands, even termites, not fossil fuels.

That finding comes even though scientists also concluded that methane emissions from oil, coal and natural gas are 20 to 60 percent higher than previously estimated.

“We recognize the findings might seem counterintuitive — methane emissions from fossil fuel development have been dramatically underestimated — but they’re not directly responsible for the increase in total methane emissions observed since 2007,” said lead author Stefan Schwietzke of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences [CIRES] at the University of Colorado Boulder, working in NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory.

The report, published Thursday in the journal Nature, provided fodder to those challenging the EPA’s methane rule, released in May, which seeks to cut methane emissions from fossil-fuel sources by 40 to 45 percent by 2025 from 2012 levels in order to combat climate change.
There is more.

A study has also blamed hydroelectric dam reservoirs as a major source of methane.   The science appears to be settled that nature is the problem and not fossil fuels.  This has to be disappointing to the anti-energy left.


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