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climate & energy justice

Methane, Fracked Gas & Climate

Methane (the main component in natural gas) is 100 times as bad for the climate as carbon dioxide over the short term. Less CO2 is emitted by natural gas than by coal when burned. But significant leakage of methane before burning makes gas a disaster for the climate, even as utilities and the gas industry are feverishly promoting fracked gas.

NC WARN is working hard to connect the dots between climate change, methane leakage and the fracking boom that is driven by demand from the electric power industry.

Learn more about our methane work here.

Watch a 3-minute video by Cornell University’s Dr. Robert Howarth describing why natural gas is a disastrous strategy for the climate. More videos, PowerPoints and documentation here.

“Everything You Need to Know About Methane”, a primer by Earthjustice.

Sub-categories

N.C. solar can replace fossil fuels, save billions – and ease the climate crisis — News & Observer

Op-ed by Jim Warren. With countless challenges buffeting our society, I regret to report that the global climate crisis is storming ahead as if it were the only demand for our wisdom and collective action. Fortunately, two practical opportunities are available, and North Carolina has a pressing duty to start making good decisions.

California energy interests set to square off over Puente natural gas plant — Utility Dive

A battle is brewing in southern California between a utility planning to build a new natural gas plant and clean energy advocates who say solar and storage facilities could provide the power for cheaper.

July Heat was Unprecedented, NASA Scientists Say — Note to Editors from NC WARN

NASA reports that July 2017 edged out last year’s July as the hottest month ever recorded... The world’s leading scientists say the recent surge of super-potent methane is a key factor in the unexpected rate of warming.

Switching from coal to natural gas will not save our planet — Seattle Times

Op-Ed by Bill McKibben. Most magic tricks and confidence games mostly work the same way — a little bit of misdirection to get the audience looking in the wrong direction. And some of the finest magicians at large in America today are its natural-gas salesmen, who have worked hard to reassure us that they’re part of the solution to the global warming crisis. To understand why that’s a ploy — to understand why they’re in fact helping drive the heating of the planet — you have to pay close attention.

Global Heat Wave Continues for Fourth Year through June – News Release from NC WARN

As regional heatwaves, wildfires and other extremes continue their nightmarish advance alongside the incredible rate of global heating, the oil, gas and power industries don’t want the public to know about the methane-climate connection. They prefer to keep building unneeded power plants and pipelines while stifling the transition to economically superior clean energy solutions.

Flawed Environmental Justice Analyses — Science

In December 2016, FERC issued a draft environmental impact statement for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline... The proposed route crosses territories of four Native American tribes in North Carolina, ...[who have] unique concerns deriving from their status as indigenous peoples.

Federal Law Requires Restart of Atlantic Coast Pipeline Review Process, says NC WARN Attorney – News Release by NC WARN

Intervenor NC WARN and two dozen allied nonprofits opposing the pipeline filed a motion late yesterday citing clear federal law that requires FERC to carefully review the new data and prepare an updated EIS, and allow the public, along with various state and federal agencies, to review and comment on the completed document. 

Natural gas building boom fuels climate worries, enrages landowners – Center for Public Integrity

But Robert Howarth, an environmental biology professor at Cornell University, estimates that methane emissions produced by shale gas from wellhead to delivery could add up to a 12-percent leak rate — causing substantially more warming in the short term than coal. Howarth sees the rapid rise in gas development as a contributor to the recent spike in global temperatures, including record-breaking heat waves in 2015 and 2016. “The buildout of pipelines,” he said, “is a true climate disaster.”

EPA’s Methane Estimates for Oil and Gas Sector Under Investigation — Inside Climate News

The Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Inspector General will investigate how the agency estimates methane emissions from the oil and gas sector after an environmental group alleged that its emission estimates and regulations are based, in part, on faulty studies.

Record 4-year Global Heating Continues As Whistleblower Complaint Leads to Inquiry into Underreporting of Methane Emissions — Note to Editors from NC WARN

The EPA’s inspector general’s office announced Wednesday that it will evaluate EPA methane emissions estimates for the oil and gas sector to determine “whether concerns about technical or other problems with [the Allen studies of 2013 and 2014] were … addressed or resolved” by the EPA. Those problems were the subject of a June 2016 complaint filed by NC WARN. See report on Inspector General's announcement in Inside Climate News.

Emergency Methane Action

Watch press conference at the Governor's office in Raleigh on June 15, 2017 featuring Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, president of the NC NAACP.
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blackburn-homeThe John O. Blackburn Award
Read the inspiring stories of Dr. Steve Wing, Joyce and Rev. Nelson Johnson, and other recipients of NC WARN's Blackburn Award.

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