Using Satellites to Track Carbon Emissions Is On the Horizon click button

Using Satellites to Track Carbon Emissions Is On the Horizon

By Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer

Soon it will be possible to precisely track carbon emissions anywhere on the planet by satellite.  Carbon Mapper, a new nonprofit, plans to launch its first two satellites in 2023, which they hope will be joined by a “constellation” of other satellites two years later. 

Why This Matters: These satellites would be able to detect methane and carbon emissions, giving people a potent tool to hold emitters accountable — just like pollution monitors on the ground might.

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“Frack Pack” Bills Reintroduced by Congress — Time to Close Loopholes?

“Frack Pack” Bills Reintroduced by Congress — Time to Close Loopholes?

Today, four House Democrats — Matt Cartwright (PA) Yvette Clarke (NY), Diana DeGette (CO), and Jan Schakowsky (IL) — reintroduced a package of five bills that would hold oil and gas companies accountable to meet national water and air protection standards, plugging loopholes and undoing many of the anti-environment policies of the Trump administration. 

Why This Matters: President Donald Trump rolled back 28 air quality and emissions regulations and 8 water pollution regulations — these bills would reverse those rollbacks and close loopholes in current law.

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Gas Flaring Wastes Energy and Pollutes the Air – Why is it Still Happening? click button

Gas Flaring Wastes Energy and Pollutes the Air – Why is it Still Happening?

Gas flaring was responsible for Texas’s recent increase in oil refinery pollution, but it’s hardly a new problem. We’re less than a decade away from the UN’s goal of Zero Routine Flaring by 2030, but refineries still flare 150 billion cubic meters of natural gas each year, releasing 400 million tons of greenhouse gasses and other pollutants into the atmosphere.

Why This Matters: Companies have historically practiced gas flaring as a convenient and inexpensive way to “dispose of ” gas that was extracted alongside oil, as opposed to storing paying to store it.

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Fossil Fuel Pollution Kills Nearly 9 Million Each Year

Fossil Fuel Pollution Kills Nearly 9 Million Each Year

New research suggests that the effects of pollution from burning coal and gasoline may be even more deadly than many other health threats.  A new study has found that 8.7 million people around the world die each year from breathing polluted air caused by fossil fuels.

Why this Matters: This study — published in Environmental Research, as a collaboration between researchers from Harvard University, the University of Birmingham, the University of Leicester, and University College London— suggests that fossil fuel pollution accounted for 18% of total deaths in 2018.

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62 Oil and Gas Companies Pledge to Reduce Methane, U.S. Companies Turn the Other Way

62 Oil and Gas Companies Pledge to Reduce Methane, U.S. Companies Turn the Other Way

This week, following a U.N. report showing that methane levels in the atmosphere are at an all-time high, more than 60 oil and gas companies joined a new voluntary agreement to report and reduce their emissions. The companies making the pledge represent 30% of global oil and gas operations, but none of them were American.

Why This Matters: According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the global oil and gas industry produced 82 gigatons of methane in 2019 alone.

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China and the U.S. Trade Environmental Barbs

China and the U.S. Trade Environmental Barbs

Yesterday the Chinese government released a detailed condemnation of the U.S. government’s environment and climate policies.  Labeled as a “Fact Sheet of Environmental Damage Caused by the US,” it contains a litany of U.S. environmental failures.

Why This Matters:  The U.S.’s shot at China came after the Chinese announced at the UN General Assembly that China plans to be climate neutral by 2060.

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