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UN to declare slashing methane emissions more important than previously thought

UN to declare slashing methane emissions more important than previously thought
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The United Nations is expected to announce, in a landmark report, that reducing methane emissions must play a larger role in preventing the worst effects of climate change, The New York Times reported on Sunday.

The global methane assessment, a report put together by an international group of scientists, is expected to express the growing determination that the globe must begin to quickly decrease planet-warming gas emissions, including methane, the principal component in natural gas, to help matters in the short term.

The Times reviewed a detailed summary of the report, which they said is expected to be published next month by the Climate and Clean Air Coalition and the United Nations Environmental Programme.

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The report, according to The Times, identifies the fossil fuel industry as the field with the largest potential of reducing methane emissions at little or no cost.

The assessment reportedly adds that, without the creation and deployment of new technology that removes greenhouse gases from the air, increasing the use of natural gas conflicts with holding global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, a goal of the Paris Agreement.

According to The Times, the report indicates a shift in the global conversation regarding climate change, which has largely focused on reducing carbon dioxide.

The looming report comes after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that carbon dioxide and methane emissions surged last year, even in the thick of coronavirus shutdowns.

The topic of climate change has been a key priority in the first 100 days of the Biden administration. Last week, the White House hosted a two-day virtual climate summit with forty heads of state.

The White House announced at the summit that by 2030, the U.S. expects to reduce its carbon emissions by between 50 and 52 percent, compared to 2005 levels.