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Methane Emissions Questions Gas Being ‘Bridge’ Fuel

posted Apr 19, 2014, 12:26 PM by Tyler Umstead   [ updated Jun 22, 2014, 11:58 AM by Rachael Huff ]

"Natural gas as a means to produce electricity is being hailed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as the fuel that can act as a “bridge” between carbon-heavy coal and zero-carbon renewables, helping to reduce humans’ impact on the climate.

The idea is that burning natural gas involves fewer greenhouse gas emissions than burning coal. The IPCC in its Working Group III report says natural gas as a bridge fuel will only be effective if few gases escape into the atmosphere during natural gas production and distribution.

But a study published Monday adds to the growing evidence those escaping gases, called “fugitive” emissions, are numerous, especially methane emissions while a well is being drilled, a phase of well development previously thought to emit little if any methane. Over a 100-year time frame, methane is about 35 times as potent as a climate change-driving greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and over 20 years, it’s 84 times more potent."

To read more, see original article
-Bobby Magill