The US Department of Energy (DOE) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are seeking applications for $850m in funding aimed at reducing methane emissions in the oil and gas sectors.

The funding, which aims to help measure, monitor, quantify and reduce methane emissions from the country’s oil and gas sectors, forms part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda and aligns with the administration’s efforts to significantly cut methane emissions.

Due to be made available through the administration’s climate law, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), the funding seeks to address air pollution, generate employment, and enhance the efficiency of oil and gas operations.

These efforts contribute to the nation’s pursuit of President Biden’s climate and clean air objectives.

The grants are particularly designed to assist small oil and gas operators in adopting innovative technologies for methane emission reduction.

Additionally, they aim to foster partnerships that improve emissions measurement and provide transparent data to communities affected by these emissions.

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The funding also helps small operators curb methane leaks, expedite repairs on low-producing wells, and enhance access to empirical data and monitoring participation.

Eligible applicants include industry stakeholders, academic institutions, non-governmental organisations, Native American tribes, and state and local governments.

The deadline for grant applications is 26 August 2024.

US Secretary of Energy Jennifer M Granholm said: “As we continue to accelerate the nation’s clean energy transition, we are taking steps now to drastically reduce harmful emissions from America’s largest source of industrial methane – the oil and gas sector.”

In 2023, the Biden Administration has taken nearly 100 actions to combat methane emissions, including an EPA rule expected to achieve an 80% reduction from the targeted oil and gas facilities.

The Methane Emissions Reduction Programme, established under the IRA, will offer extensive technical and financial support.

US EPA administrator Michael S Regan said: “These investments from President Biden’s Investing in America agenda will drive the deployment of available and advanced technologies to better understand where methane emissions are coming from. That will help us more effectively reduce harmful pollution, tackle the climate crisis and create good-paying jobs.”

Last month, the Council of EU approved a regulation aimed at tracking and reducing methane emissions within the energy sector.