On May 7, EPI Director Kate Konschnik and Clinical Instructor Aladdine Joroff, who co-chairs the Boston Bar Association’s air committee, convened a meeting at the Boston Bar Association on methane leakage from natural gas distribution.
Kathryn McKain, a Harvard graduate student who participates in the EPI Oil and Gas Discussion Group, led by Kate Konschnik, presented her National Academy of Sciences paper, “Methane Emissions from Natural Gas Infrastructure and Use in the Urban Region of Boston, Massachusetts.” The paper finds that Boston’s leaky natural gas infrastructure results in significant emissions of methane, which is one of the most potent greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. Indeed, 2.7 percent of the natural gas delivered to the Boston area leaks from the aging natural gas delivery system before reaching customers.
The panelists, including Prof. Steven Wofsy of Harvard University, Mark Boling of Southwestern Energy, Commissioner Paul Roberti of the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission, and Brian Jones, director of MJ Bradley’s Natural Gas Downstream Initiative, discussed policy implications of natural gas leakage in the distribution system. Attendees included representatives of utilities, independent power producers, environmental organizations, and state regulatory agencies.
Read more about McKain’s findings on natural gas leakage from Boston’s aging natural gas distribution system.