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Global Methane Assessment : Mitigating Methane Emissions

Global Methane Assessment: Benefits And Costs Of Mitigating Methane Emissions:

A report, titled Global Methane Assessment: Benefits and Costs of Mitigating Methane Emissions suggested that the world needs to dramatically cut methane emissions to avoid the worst of climate change.

  • The report was released by the Climate and Clean Air Coalition and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

Current Situation:

  • Human-caused methane emissions are increasing faster currently than at any other time since record-keeping began in the 1980s.
  • Carbon dioxide levels have dropped during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, methane in the atmosphere reached record levels last year.
  • This is a cause of concern as it was responsible for about 30%of warming since pre-industrial times.

Reducing Methane Emissions from Major Sources:

Fossil Fuel:

  • Oil and gas extraction, processing and distribution accounted for 23% of methane emissions in the fossil fuel sector. Coal mining accounted for 12% of emissions.
  • Fossil fuel industry had the greatest potential for low-cost methane cuts, up to 80% of measures in the oil and gas industry could be implemented at negative or low cost.
  • About 60% of methane cuts in this sector could make money as reducing leaks would make more gas available for sale.

Waste:

  • Landfills and wastewater made up about 20% of emissions in the waste sector.
  • The waste sector could cut its methane emissions by improving the disposal of sewage around the world.

Agriculture:

  • In the agricultural sector, livestock emissions from manure and enteric fermentation constituted for roughly 32% and rice cultivation 8% of emissions.
  • Three behavioral changes — reducing food waste and loss, improving livestock management, and adopting healthy diets (vegetarian or with a lower meat and dairy content) — could reduce methane emissions by 65–80 million tonnes per year over the next few decades.

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