The Environmental Protection Agency recently made two new proposals in hopes of further reducing methane emissions. Global emissions of this particular gas are considered the leading cause of climate change, following carbon dioxide pollution.
Emission levels in the Earth's atmosphere are at a record high, and have steadily increased over the last 20 years. A significant contributing factor is methane build-up caused by landfills.
In 1996 the EPA established Criteria for Municipal Solid Waste Landfills, under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. The proposed standards for new and modified sources are expected to reduce 340,000 to 400,000 short tons of methane by 2025, the equivalent of reducing 7.7 to 9 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.