"Frackers Are Losing $1.5 Billion Yearly to Leaks"

"Leaky pipes are the 'super low-hanging fruit' of climate change."

"Of all the many and varied consequences of fracking (water contamination, injured workers, earthquakes, the list goes on) one of the least understood is so-called 'fugitive' methane emissions. Methane is the primary ingredient of natural gas, and it escapes into the atmosphere at every stage of production: at wells, in processing plants, and in pipes on its way to your house. According to a new study, it could become one of the worst climate impacts of the fracking boom—and yet, it’s one of the easiest to tackle right away. Best of all, fixing the leaks is good for the bottom line.

According to the World Resources Institute, natural gas producers allow $1.5 billion worth of methane to escape from their operations every year. That might sound like small change to an industry that drilled up some $66.5 billion worth of natural gas in 2012 alone, but it’s a big deal for the climate: While methane only makes up 10 percent of greenhouse gas emissions (20 percent of which comes from cow farts), it packs a global warming punch 20 times stronger than carbon dioxide."

Tim McDonnell reports for Climate Desk April 5, 2013. 

Source: Climate Desk, 04/08/2013