Contact: Mollie Michel, email@example.com, 267-981-1648
Albuquerque, NM – 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 New Mexico, the areas with the most oil and gas operations are home to Latino and Indigenous communities. These populations are being burdened by the harmful air pollution that is leaking, venting, and flaring at alarming rates from oil and gas operations that can cause respiratory and heart disease. These health problems also make people more vulnerable to Covid-19, a respiratory disease that is disproportionately impacting Black, Latino, and Indigenous people. We are seeing these inequities play out at the state level as Covid-19 ravages the Navajo Nation,” said Celerah Hewes, Albuquerque resident, mom, and New Mexico Field Organizer for Moms Clean Air Force.
“It is outrageous that Trump’s EPA is working overtime to deregulate the oil and gas industry. This will result in increased air pollution, harming vulnerable communities. The EPA’s radical environmental deregulation should be considered a racist agenda. The agency should be following the lead of states like New Mexico under Governor Lujan Grisham and stepping up to enact more protective methane rules. We ask that EPA Administrator Wheeler do his job and protect the health of our children from methane pollution and climate change under the Clean Air Act.”
A recent report found that New Mexico’s oil and gas companies emit at least one million metric tons of climate-warming methane a year—five times higher than what has been previously self-reported to the EPA. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas more than 80 times more powerful than carbon dioxide in the near term.