Man wearing gas mask in front of coal mine refinery

American Lung Association in California Applauds President Biden and the Environmental Protection Agency for finalizing strong methane safeguards

This week, President Biden and the Environmental Protection Agency finalized an historic rule to cut methane pollution from oil and gas production. This is a significant step toward mitigating harmful pollution and protecting the health of communities close to oil and gas operations and preventing the worst impacts of climate change.

“This new methane rule is a major win for public health, the climate, and communities living near oil and gas operations,” said Mariela Ruacho, Senior Manager of Clean Air Advocacy for the American Lung Association in California. “Oil and gas operations release harmful pollutants that can cause worsened asthma, heart and lung diseases, and cancer. Growing up, I was impacted by emissions and flaring from oil and gas wells, which I could see from my home in Los Angeles. My community and many like it across the United States are long overdue for relief, and this new rule is an important step in the right direction. Now, to make further progress for clean air and public health, EPA must move ahead with finalizing pending car, truck, and power plant rules and approve California’s waivers to implement more health-protective policies.”

The new, stronger standards for methane pollution are an important measure to respond to climate change and air pollution challenges in California. Communities in California continuously rank among the most polluted cities for ozone and short-term particle pollution in the American Lung Association’s annual “State of the Air” report. This rule will help clean up pollution in communities across the U.S. to prevent public health harms associated with emissions from oil and gas production.

Now, EPA must move ahead with final decisions on strengthening National Ambient Air Quality Standards for particle pollution as well as final rules for cleaning up power plants, new passenger vehicles and heavy-duty trucks.

About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, which has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and is a Platinum-Level GuideStar Member, call (800) LUNGUSA ((800) 586-4872) or visit: To support the work of the American Lung Association locally, visit