Physicians for Social Responsibility Applauds Methane Vote Victory
May 10, 2017
WASHINGTON, DC (May 10, 2017) – Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) applauds the U.S. Senate's vote against a resolution that would have eliminated the Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management (BLM) rule to minimize natural gas waste and emissions on federal and tribal lands. The following is a statement from PSR Executive Director Jeff Carter:
"The BLM rules are an important component in regulating the dangerous levels of methane being emitted from fracking operations. The health risks from leaking, venting and flaring methane are serious. They include the toxic effects of volatile organic compounds that can cause cancer and damage the nervous system, as well as the rapidly mounting harm from climate change.
"This is a welcome vote for health and common sense."
Methane is an extremely potent greenhouse gas, 86 times as powerful a heat-trapper as is carbon dioxide in its first 20 years in the atmosphere. The health impacts of runaway climate change are visible in the increases in heat waves, drought, flooding, sea level rise, and vector-borne and waterborne diseases.
PSR supports the regulation of leaks, flaring and venting at all well sites, not only those on federal land, and for similar controls to be placed on transmission, processing and storage facilities, and for a ban on fracking. All fossil fuels contribute to climate change. A rapid transition to renewable energy and energy efficiency is necessary to make our world safer from climate change.
Physicians for Social Responsibility, a member organization of over 30,000 seeks to address the gravest threats to human health and survival. The group's motto is "Prevention is the only cure." PSR's international federation, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, received the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize.