Methane Capture: Options for Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction Page: 20 of 24
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Methane Capture: Options for Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction
Voluntary Methane Programs
EPA facilitates a number of voluntary programs related to the Methane-to-Markets initiative that
seek to reduce domestic methane emissions from different sectors. Many of these programs
receive broad legislative authority from the Clean Air Act, Section 103 (42 U.S.C. 7403). EPA
provides some technical assistance and educational material. The AgSTAR Program supports
biogas capture and use at livestock operations managing liquid and slurry manures.48 The
Coalbed Methane Outreach Program (CMOP) works with the coalbed methane industry to reduce
coal mine methane emissions via methane capture and reuse.49 The Natural Gas STAR Program
specializes in promoting the reduction of methane emissions from the oil production and natural
gas sector.50 The Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP) encourages landfill gas energy
projects.5' The Natural Gas STAR Program, Coalbed Methane Outreach Program, and the
Landfill Methane Outreach Program combined reduced methane emissions by approximately 64
million metric tons of CO2e in 2007 out of the roughly 324 million metric tons of CO2e of the
methane emissions reported for the landfills, natural gas systems, petroleum systems, and coal
Federal Energy Management Program
The Department of Energy's (DOE's) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) addresses
energy management at federal facilities and DOE, as well as fleet and transportation
management.53 One component of the program is converting landfill gas to energy for use at
federal facilities. DOE has implemented three landfill gas recovery projects. FEMP receives its
legislative authority from the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 ( P.L. 110-140) and
was appropriated $22 million for FY2009.
Several federal tax incentives subsidize methane capture from landfill and agriculture sources.
These tax incentives are broadly broken down into three categories: (1) incentives to produce
electricity from captured methane gas; (2) incentives to build facilities that produce electricity
from captured methane gas; and (3) incentives to produce alternative fuels using captured
Two federal tax incentives subsidize the production of electricity from methane. The production
tax credit is allowed for the production of electricity from qualified energy resources at qualified
48 For more information on the AgSTAR Program, see http://www.epa.gov/agstar.
49 For more information on the Coalbed Methane Outreach Program, see http://www.epa.gov/cmop/index.html.
so For more information on the Natural Gas STAR Program, see http://www.epa.gov/gasstar/index.html.
51 For more information on the Landfill Methane Outreach program, see http://www.epa.gov/lmop.
52 AgSTAR Program reduced methane emissions-not available. However, the program has provided technical
assistance for 135 operational anaerobic digestion systems, which generated approximately 332,100 megawatt-hours
(MWh) of energy in 2008. Environmental Protection Agency, ENERGY STAR and Other Climate Protection
Partnerships 2007 Annual Report, October 2008, http://www.epa.gov/appdstar/pdf/2007AnnualReportFinal.pdf; U.S.
EPA, U.S. Emissions Inventory 2009: Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990-2007.
53 For more information on the Federal Energy Management Program, see http://wwwl.eere.energy.gov/femp.
Congressional Research Service
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Methane Capture: Options for Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction, report, February 1, 2010; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc809768/m1/20/: accessed December 9, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.