Methane and Greenhouse gas – Earth is our home, as we all know it. Still, to date, this is the only planet in the observable universe that can support life. The earth has its atmosphere in such a unique balance of different elements that it can hold and sustain life. The earth has its biological physical and chemical ecological system. There are so many different gases are present in the atmosphere. They act as a greenhouse field cover and let the sunlight come into the earth and hold it to make the earth warm enough that helps life to keep ongoing.
As the human race has progressed in every walk of life, especially after the industrial revolution, the emission of so many gases has changed the equilibrium of the atmosphere of the earth. Global warming is the outcome of all these emissions. As a result, the quantity of the greenhouse gases has increased, and the heat coming from the sun cannot escape back, which has resulted that the heat level inside the hearth atmosphere has increased dramatically.
The ice caps are melting all over, and because of that, the sea level is also increasing, which is a constant threat to some of the cities near the coastal areas. There is another effect now can be felt very clearly that is the more violent weather, the rise in temperature and also summer is dominating over the winter season. The outcome of these effects is a big threat to the survival of humans and other species on the globe as there is a shortage of food and fresh drinking water. It is estimated that if some concrete steps are not taken immediately, it can be catastrophic and devastating.
Here is the list of most affecting greenhouse gases
- Carbon Dioxide (CO2)
- Methane (CH4)
- Nitrous oxide (N2O)
- Dichlorodifluoromethane (CCl2F2)
- Chlorodifluoromethane (CHClF2)
- Tetrafluoromethane (CF4)
- Hexafluoroethane (C2F6)
- Sulfur Hexafluoride (SF6)
- Nitrogen Trifluoride (NF3)
- Ozone (O3)
- Water Vapors (Clouds)
Almost every country in the world contributes to the emission of greenhouse gases, but the share of the developed countries is more as compared to the underdeveloped countries or third world countries. The governments all over the world are making legislation and laws to control one of the major issues in the history of mankind. The atmosphere of the world has changed dramatically after the industrial revolution and possessed more than 40 percent of carbon dioxide escalating global warming very rapidly.
The six greenhouse gases:
Carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulphur hexafluoride, these three are of concern because they are closely associated with the human activities as the number of vehicles and industries has increased by an enormous rate. Fossil fuel is one of the biggest sources of energy in the world today, and when burnt, carbon emission is produced, which is one of the main reasons for climate change.
Methane is also another big reason behind the global climate change present in the depths of the earth and also from the burning of natural resources like woods and coal. The uncontrolled production of oil and gas, the big piles of cattle dung, rotten crops are the main contributors in the release of methane into the atmosphere. Most of the farmers set into the fire the residues of crops which aggravate the situation, especially in winter as the air pressure is high and dense air don’t let the smoke spread out. Along with other factors, Nitrous oxide is also one of the biggest threats and challenges contributing to the atmosphere charges. It is hundreds of times more harmful than carbon and methane combined.
The USA is a developed country, and it is also responsible for the emission of these gases into the atmosphere. According to reports, the current USA government under President Trump administration has shown its tendency for a plan to curb the regulations dealing with the methane emission, which is a major contributor to the climate changes. The Environmental Protection Agency has tabled a proposal and changes to some major necessary actions, a must for the oil and gas supply companies to make sure the detection and fixation of the methane emissions.
The majority of energy-producing companies are against this proposed change in the rule. The industry will get the benefit, but the environment will suffer badly. President Trump also has the plan to make the rule of opening up the public land and water for drilling and mining. Furthermore, the Environmental Protection Agency has planning to roll back the clean water regulations. The Trump administration wants to cut down the regulations in order to give the oil and gas industry a free hand to achieve sustained growth in the economy. There is another aspect that EPA is eager to lower the burden on imports and improve the local industry.
Statics have shown that the methane production has doubled and the emission level dropped by almost 15 percent after the 1990 regulations. The relaxation in the laws is a major setback in the efforts to fight climate change as methane is one of the major contributors in it. According to David Doniger, a lawyer with the Natural Resources Defence Council, the Trump administration has given a free pass to pollute the atmosphere and want to take it to the noticed by the court. This new proposal will be only dealing with methane other gases coming from the same source will be regulated as usual. The new proposal will be estimated to be finalized in the first quarter of the next year.
Methane is the second-largest greenhouse gas, which is affecting the atmosphere. It can spread very rapidly and can last for a longer period of time into the climatic equilibrium as the latest studies have suggested that it can trap 80 percent more heat than that of carbon dioxide. Agriculture, oil, and gas industries are the major contributors in it. The attempt was made earlier as soon as Mr. Trump joined the office, but the federal appeals court ruled out the regulations. The National Climate Assessment has already warned about the warming effects of greenhouse gases. As a result, there are more wildfires and a rapid decrease in crop production, and it can cause damage to the economy by 10 percent.
The bigger companies associated with the oil and gas industry wants to tighten the rules, but the small industries want to let the rules be relaxed as the inspection cost them a lot of money. There is a big debate going on this topic, and the administrations have to choose between the environment and industry.