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Oil and gas group launches voluntary methane program

A gas flare is seen at a natural gas processing facility near Williston, N.D. Photo: Matthew Brown / AP

The American Petroleum Institute is announcing today a new voluntary program to cut emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, and other air pollution from oil and natural gas wells.

Why it matters: This is the first time in API's nearly 100-year history that it has launched a program to cut air pollution. It's also the most concrete sign climate change is becoming a significant mainstream concern within the disparate oil and gas industry. Moves like this by trade groups represent the lowest, not highest, common denominator for positions within any given sector.