A mish-mash of methane news this May!
First, a little self-promotion: our own Felicia Ruiz and Raymond C. Pilcher (Raven Ridge) penned a piece on coal bed methane and coal mine methane development in Mongolia for World Coal. Check it out!
There was a lot of attention on cows this month – specifically on their belches, flatulence, and manure that are key sources of methane emissions. We here at GMI advocate capturing the methane from cow manure through anaerobic digestion to use as biogas, but an entrepreneurial Italian took our advice a step further – to use the remaining de-methanated concoction as a raw material to make plaster, bricks and other objects known as merdacotta, or literally, ‘baked poop.’. Meanwhile, scientists in other parts of the world are attempting to tackle methane emissions that result from enteric fermentation, from feeding the cows hops or a compound called 3-nitrooxypropanol to reduce methane emissions from digestion. Indians are taking a different approach by studying miniature Vechur cows for their dairy production needs that release only 10% the level of methane emissions of a normal-sized cow.
The United States made a big announcement: new regulations that will target emissions from new or modified oil and gas wells. The New Republic and Washington Post followed up with analytical think pieces on the importance of methane mitigation and why the impact of methane emissions can be confusing. Vox published an explainer that describes the new U.S. regulations within the larger context of U.S. climate pledges.
Finally, two methane mentions this month outside our usual spectrum: 1) Swedish researchers are developing clothes that would be able to absorb methane from the ambient atmosphere, and 2) Rwanda inaugurated a power plant that uses a natural methane emissions source found in its Lake Kivu.
P.S. If you didn’t see it, the Climate Lab Book created a compelling infographic that shows global temperature change since 1850. Worth keeping!
May Methane News Round-Up
- Agricultural emissions ‘reality check‘ (BBC)
- Beano for Bovines: Here’s How Researchers Are Cutting Methane Emissions From Cows (Vice)
- Cardiff scientists to use hops to stop cows producing methane (BBC News)
- CBM and CMM development in Mongolia (World Coal)
- India to fight climate change with ‘dwarf cows that rarely break wind’ (The Telegraph)
- Merdacotta: domestic objects made from dung (The Economist)
- Methane-capture clothes developed to absorb greenhouse gases (Engineering & Technology)
- Obama administration announces historic new regulations for methane emissions from oil and gas (Washington Post)
- Researchers are closing in on a way to reduce methane emissions from cows (Food and Wine)
- Rwanda inaugurates 26 MW plant using methane from Lake Kivu (Engineering)
- Satellites detail continued rise of atmospheric methane and CO2 (Giz Mag)
- Spiralling global temperatures (Climate Lab Book)
- The EPA is cracking down on methane leaks from (new) oil and gas wells (Vox)
- Why Methane Is Having a Moment (The New Republic)
- Why we’re still so incredibly confused about methane’s role in global warming (Washington Post)