Key Messages:

More than $330 million worth of natural gas is wasted on public and tribal lands each year.

Taxpayers could lose out on $800 million in royalties over the next decade because of venting and flaring natural gas, according to a Western Values Project report. This doesn’t include leaks.

75% of registered voters in Western states support cutting natural gas waste on public lands, according to a 2017 poll by Colorado College’s State of the Rockies Project.

Major western papers love it. The Denver Post, Santa Fe New Mexican, Albuquerque Journal, Durango Herald and Grand Junction Daily Sentinel have all supported the BLM’s methane rule.

Colorado has done it. After Colorado put in place similar rules, natural gas production and the number of active wells increased.

It’s cheap. An ICF International report found that it would cost industry less than a penny on the dollar to deploy methane mitigation technologies, and a survey of oil and gas production companies in Colorado found that most operators believe that Colorado’s rule is cost effective.

The Four Corners region ranks No. 1 for methane pollution in the nation. In fact, NASA recently found a methane cloud the size of Delaware hovering over northwest New Mexico and southwest Colorado.

Air pollution is a serious public health issue. Natural gas contains volatile organic compounds that contribute to poor air quality, which can exacerbate asthma or respiratory conditions. The leaked gas includes benzene and other hazardous air pollutants that are known carcinogens.