Statement from Jim Warren regarding Dominion Energy’s announcement today:
It’s encouraging that a leading fossil fuel CEO is finally acknowledging the huge importance of methane (“natural” gas) in the struggle to slow the climate crisis. Scientists say methane is a leading driver of global heating in the short term due to its potency. Most of the increased methane emissions in recent years comes from the oil and gas industry, according to NASA – and fracked gas is the worst. But even if ALL methane were captured instead of vented unburned into the air, we still must stop using fracked gas altogether if humanity is going to avert runaway climate chaos. That means Dominion and its partner, Duke Energy, must stop trying to build the ill-fated Atlantic Coast Pipeline – which is already $3 billion (60%) over budget, with construction stalled for months or years – and join the revolution toward cheaper, renewables matched with storage.
WFAE Story by David Boraks
Methane that leaks from natural gas wells and pipelines or is vented during pipeline testing contributes to destruction of the ozone layer. Dominion Energy of Virginia says it will cut methane emissions from its natural gas system by about 25 percent over the next decade to help fight climate change.
Dominion is one of the nation’s largest natural gas companies, with more than 100,000 miles of pipelines. It’s the lead developer of the 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline, which is supposed to run from West Virginia to Virginia and eastern North Carolina.
Spokesman Aaron Ruby said the company recognizes the need to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
“The primary focus of this initiative is to keep more methane in our system and out of the atmosphere,” Ruby said.
Dominion plans to do that in three ways: Improving leak detection and repairs, replacing older less efficient equipment, and reducing or eliminating gas venting before maintenance, which Ruby said is the company’s main source of methane emissions.
“We’re going to be capturing, recycling and re-using methane before we do maintenance and inspections,” Ruby said.