Leah Schleifer, MPP candidate in the School of Public Policy, will be discussing her work with the World Resources Institute:
Methane accounts for 11% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, and is 25 times more efficient at capturing heat that CO2. Much of these methane emissions come from livestock operations, wastewater treatment, and landfills. At the same time, the U.S. is struggling to find renewable fuels for hard-to-electrify end energy uses, such as medium and heavy duty vehicles. Increasingly, fleets are switching over to CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) from diesel, in order to maximize cost-effectiveness while minimizing CO2 emissions. Natural gas is essentially pure methane, the same gas that is escaping or being flared from waste operations and warming the planet. What if these fleets could run on our waste? Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) is completely interchangeable with conventional natural gas, but instead of being hydraulically fractured from below-ground, it uses the methane from existing waste sources. This presentation will explore the current status, trends, and science behind Renewable Natural Gas (RNG), and its use as a vehicle fuel.