EU Parliament Votes On New Law To Reduce Methane Emissions, Gives Final Approval On Carbon Removal Certification Framework

EU Passes Due Diligence Directive To Mitigate Companies' Adverse Impact - Carbon Herald
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The EU Parliament has adopted a new law tackling methane emissions. The Parliament voted on Wednesday April 10th (530 votes in favor and 63 against) on a pioneering new law to reduce methane emissions in the energy sector to curb climate change. 

According to the new stricter regulations, operators in the oil and gas sector must detect and repair methane leaks. They must submit a methane leak detection and repair programme and carry out a first leak detection and repair survey of existing sites. Methane leaks found above certain levels are to be fixed no later than in five days.

Relevant: EU Backs Plan For New Law Cutting Methane Emissions

Flaring will be banned from 1 January 2025 and venting will be banned from 1 January 2027 in coal mines emitting more than 5 tonnes of methane per kilotonne of coal mined. They will have to continuously measure and report emissions from methane. Operators will also have to set-up a public inventory of mines closed or abandoned in the last 70 years and measure their emissions. 

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As imports make up over 80% of the oil and gas consumed in the EU, after 1st of January 2027, importers would have to demonstrate equivalent monitoring, reporting and verification requirements at production level. A full list of the requirements of the EU Methane Regulation can be found here.

“This is the first EU law aiming to reduce methane emissions. Until now, methane was a blind spot in our climate policies. Now we are not only tackling domestic methane emissions but also those from our fossil fuels imports! This is further progress in the Green Deal to respect our international commitments,” commented Pascal Canfin, European Parliament Member.

Relevant: EU Council And Parliament Reach Agreement On The Carbon Removal Certification Framework

On Wednesday, the European Parliament also approved the previously agreed upon Carbon Removal Certification Framework which passed in with a 441-139 vote. Back in Feb 2024, the European Council and Parliament gave their provisional political agreement for the framework that was proposed by the EU Commission. The framework outlines rules for the carbon removal certification system that differentiates between categories of carbon removal and emission reduction activities. 

Now after this final vote, the framework will be formally adopted by both the Council and the Parliament, following revision by lawyer-linguists and is expected to come into force afterwards.

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