Council of Canadians Saskatoon chapter activists Burton Urquhart and Dallas New write in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix that, “Saskatchewan has the dubious distinction of having the highest per capita emissions of greenhouse gases of any province.”
In their op-ed they note, “Most of us think of carbon dioxide (CO2) as the major culprit in climate change. However, even though less of it is emitted, methane is much worse – the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says as much as 86 times worse if we take a 20-year time frame. Yet, by the oil and gas industry’s own figures, in terms of the effect on climate change, 21 per cent of Saskatchewan’s emissions are from the release of methane from oil and gas installations: venting, which is the deliberate release of methane; flaring, the burning that turns the methane into CO2 and water, thus still contributing to climate change; and leakage.”
The chapter activists highlight, “The provincial government’s target is to reduce the 2006 level of emissions by 20 per cent by 2020. So it is easy to see that the step of eliminating or dramatically reducing the release of methane from oil and gas installations would achieve that goal all by itself.”
They conclude, “Emitting methane is both wasteful and destructive. It is not something that we should permit the oil and gas industry to continue.”
To read their full op-ed – Stop venting, flaring methane gas – please click here.