Monday, June 17, 2024
HomeEU affairsEU methane regulation formally adopted

EU methane regulation formally adopted

The first-ever EU rules to curb methane emissions from the energy sector in Europe and across the globe became legislation on 27 May 2024. This adoption marks another step in the implementation of the European Green Deal and REPowerEU and it shows Europe’s determination to tackle harmful emissions at home and internationally.

“Methane is the second highest contributor to global warming and air pollution after CO2, accounting for around a third of greenhouse gas emissions, harming both our environment and our health,” said the European Commission for Energy, Kadri Simson. “With the final EU adoption of the methane regulation we now have means to get clearer insight into the main sources of methane emissions in the energy sector. This will increase transparency and provide the tools necessary to reduce these potent emissions, both in the EU and globally.”

The new regulation obliges the fossil gas, oil and coal industries in Europe to measure, monitor, report and verify their methane emissions according to the highest monitoring standards and to take action to reduce them. It requires EU gas, oil and coal operators to stop avoidable and routine flaring and to reduce flaring and venting to situations such as emergencies, technical malfunctions or when it is necessary for safety reasons.

With Europe importing a large part of the fossil energy it consumes, the regulation will also help to reduce methane emissions from imported fossil fuels. The regulation will progressively introduce more stringent requirements to ensure that exporters gradually apply the same monitoring, reporting and verification obligations as EU operators.

The new rules require the Commission to put in place a monitoring tool on global methane emitters to provide information, based on satellite data, on the magnitude, occurrence and location of high methane-emitting sources occurring within or outside the EU.

The Commission will also set up a rapid alert mechanism for ‘super-emitting’ events, namely incidents where facilities, equipment or infrastructure emit very high rates of methane. The mechanism will act as an early warning system to detect super-emitting events and alert the EU or non-EU countries in order for action to be taken to stop or prevent them.

Sign up for our newsletters

    Monthly newsletter – Delivering the most important energy stories of the month selected by our Editor-in-chief
    Weekly Oil&Gas roundup - All major news about the oil and gas industry, LNG developments, the upscaling of new gases and related EU regulations arriving in your mailbox every Monday.
    Weekly Renewables&Climate roundup - All major news about investments in renewable energy sources, environment protection, green hydrogen and new innovative ways to tackle the climate crisis arriving in your mailbox every Tuesday.

    Most Popular