Congress’ vote to reject methane rule threatens our health and the climate

Media Contacts
Rachel Richardson

Environment America

Washington, D.C. – On Friday, Congress voted to override the Bureau of Land Management’s methane rule using the Congressional Review Act. The rule, adopted under the Obama Administration, would have limited harmful methane pollution from drilling wells on federal lands.

Rachel Richardson, director of Environment America’s Stop Drilling Program, issued the following statement:

“Methane is both a potent climate change pollutant and a toxic threat to human health.  Catastrophes such as the massive leak at Aliso Canyon in California, where 200 million pounds of toxic methane leaked forcing community evacuations, are a sad reminder of its impact.

Congress has voted to allow harmful methane pollution to leak unchecked from some 100,000 fracking and drilling wells on our public lands.  This is a terrible idea on numerous fronts.  

Methane contributes to global warming; which is altering our climate.  Having just experienced the hottest year on record, the urgent need to act on climate could not be clearer. To avoid the worst impacts of climate change, we need to keep fossil fuels in the ground. 

On behalf of the American people and our families and the lands we hold in public trust, the Congress should be taking every opportunity to limit the harmful air pollution created by drilling, mining, and fracking for oil and gas.”