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Bureau of Land Management Finalizes Rules For Methane Emissions

Bureau of Land Management

The Obama Administration has finalized a Bureau of Land Management rule designed to reduce methane emissions, but critics hope it will be overturned when Donald Trump takes office.

The new rule requires oil and gas producers on Indian lands and federal public lands to cut emissions of the potent greenhouse gas. The BLM says the regulations will “reduce wasteful flaring, venting, and leaks of natural gas owned by the American public” and bring in more royalty revenues for taxpayers. Environmental groups hailed the action, saying it also will improve air quality and public health. In a release, Carol Davis of the grassroots Navajo group Diné CARE said it will help protect public lands surrounding Native communities in the Four Corners and Greater Chaco regions. However, two industry groups are challenging the BLM’s authority to make the rule. The new president also could overturn it, but that would reportedly require a new BLM rule-making process.

Gail Binkly is a career journalist who has worked for the Colorado Springs Gazette and Cortez Journal. She is currently a freelance writer as well as the editor of the Four Corners Free Press, based in Cortez.
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