ICCR Investors Welcome EPA Regulation of Methane Leaks
Faith-based and socially responsible investors welcome the EPA rules to curb methane leaks on new and modified oil & gas infrastructure.
NEW YORK, NY – THURSDAY, May 12, 2016 – Methane leaks during oil and gas production constitute a dangerous addition to the greenhouse gases causing global warming and are a waste of valuable natural gas. Reducing the incidence of leaks is cost effective and investors welcome strong regulation to minimize this danger to the global climate and human health. "Trillium welcomes the EPA’s final rule on new and modified methane sources and sees it as a critical step in addressing this overhang for the oil and gas industry. Methane emissions pose significant risks for investors that warrant this EPA action and future rules for existing oil and gas infrastructure and operations,” said Jonas Kron, Senior Vice President at Trillium Asset Management. "Leaking methane is lost product, and its potent climate impact lessens natural gas’ ability to play a role in a cleaner energy mix.”
Investors representing $3.6 trillion recently issued a statement supporting the Obama Administration pledge to also limit methane leaks from existing oil and gas infrastructure. ICCR investors applaud the Administration’s new rule, and strongly urge the industry and its trade associations not to take these rules to court. “Our faith-based and values-driven investors are looking to the industry to fully adopt and implement proven and cost effective technologies to cut methane waste, and to be transparent about its management of methane emissions. We are concerned about the long-term health of the companies in which we invest, but also about the wellbeing of communities and the natural systems threatened by climate change,” said Christina Herman, Program Director for Climate and Environment for the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility. “Reducing methane leakage is an important aspect of North America’s contribution to the Paris Agreement. Methane emissions represent a real risk to the ability of natural gas to serve as a cleaner fuel source in a global environment looking to reduce climate impacts. As responsible investors, we welcome robust, effective regulation.”
According to Rhodium Group’s 2015 report on global methane emissions from oil and natural gas systems, wasted natural gas escaping into the atmosphere represents approximately $30 billion of lost revenue. Capturing and reusing the gas presents a significant economic opportunity.
Natural gas production has been steadily rising over the past several years and that trend is expected to continue, driven in part by demand in the electric power industry as it shifts toward cleaner burning fuels. Continued growth will in part depend on ensuring that methane emissions are effectively kept in check.
About the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR)
Celebrating its 45th year, ICCR is the pioneer coalition of shareholder advocates who view the management of their investments as a catalyst for change. Its 300 member organizations comprise faith communities, socially responsible asset managers, unions, pensions, NGOs and academic institutions representing combined assets of over $100 billion with a record of corporate engagement that has demonstrated influence on corporate policies that further justice and sustainability. ICCR members engage hundreds of corporations annually in an effort to promote greater corporate accountability on questions such as climate change, corporate water stewardship, sustainable food production, human trafficking and slavery in global supply chains and increased access to both financial and health care services for communities in need. www.iccr.org
Director of Communications, ICCR