Contact: Mollie Michel, firstname.lastname@example.org, 267-981-1648
Washington, DC — Today, the Trump Administration is poised to announce a major rollback of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methane rule that protects families and communities from harmful air pollution. The rollback would allow the oil and gas industry to release millions of tons of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, and other harmful pollutants, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), into the air our families breathe, posing a serious threat to public health and making the climate crisis worse. Today’s rollback flouts EPA’s core mission to protect public health and the environment.
In response, Patrice Tomcik, Project Manager for Moms Clean Air Force, issued the following statement:
“Methane pollution safeguards are critical in the fight against climate change, and they also help protect my family’s health from harmful air pollutants, such as benzene, that can cause cancer and contribute to ozone pollution or smog,” said Patrice, who lives with natural gas wells in her Southwestern Pennsylvania community. “I’m concerned about what my children are breathing when they go to school or play sports outside.
“Oil and gas operations are leaking, venting, and flaring dangerous air pollution that impacts the health of children and families that live, learn, and play nearby. Communities like mine have to breathe this air pollution that can contribute to asthma attacks and respiratory diseases. This is especially troubling right now, because we know that these same lung problems can put people at a higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
“As we face the impacts of COVID-19—a disease that attacks the respiratory system—the importance of clean air protections for our families and communities has never been clearer. The fact that the Trump Administration wants to roll back methane safeguards while we are facing a pandemic and our nation is in turmoil is unconscionable. This is yet another blatant gift to corporate polluters at the expense of our families’ health. Moms across the nation strongly oppose the rollback to the EPA methane rule.”
Oil and gas operations across the U.S. release over 13 million metric tons of climate-warming methane a year. This pollution accounts for 25 percent of the global warming we are experiencing today. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas more than 80 times more powerful than carbon dioxide in the near term.