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Seizing the Moment to Align Oil and Gas Methane Mitigation

A recent flurry of cross-border activity between the U.S. and its two North American neighbors appears poised to shift the continent towards a more unified oil and gas regulatory regime.

Last month the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell signed a memorandum of understanding with Mexico’s energy ministry to facilitate discussion and information sharing towards sustainable development of the oil and gas sector and common environmental standards.

And earlier this month, as part of a first formal bilateral meeting between U.S. President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the U.S. and Canadian administrations issued a joint statement that highlighted common goals to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 40-45% below 2012 levels by 2025, as well as additional steps towards achieving those goals.

In particular, the U.S. committed to begin immediately to develop regulations for methane emissions from existing oil and gas sources, including starting a process next month to require companies to provide information on existing emissions sources. The