Four Things to Know About EDF’s New Permian Methane Estimates

The Environmental Defense Fund’s new calculations of methane leakage in the Permian Basin are still undergoing scientific review, but that didn’t stop the organization from releasing its figures – based on questionable methodologies and assumptions – alongside a map of alleged methane leaks in the basin.

Identifying and fixing methane leaks is a priority for U.S. oil and natural gas operators, and EDF’s work in this space could be very useful in helping industry to achieve greater success in doing so. However, this new report appears to have been more focused on grabbing headlines than finding solutions. In fact, unlike EDF’s past research, this analysis has yet to be peer-reviewed:

“We’re using proven scientific methods to measure methane, and intend to publish our results in peer-reviewed scientific journals. Because verifying the accuracy of the data is so crucial, and [sic] independent scientific advisory panel is reviewing our methods.”

EID has four important things to keep in mind when reading EDF’s new report and map on

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