Methane Emissions Reduction Program


Jan 04, 2024

Methane Emissions Reduction Program

In December 2023, the EPA and the DOE announced preliminary grant funding of $350 million to support states and industry in reducing methane emissions from low-producing wells in 14 states. The grants, part of the Methane Emissions Reduction Program (MERP), are conditionally based on each state’s proportional number of low-producing (also known as stripper or marginal) conventional wells on nonfederal lands.

The grants are intended to help states support industry efforts to measure and mitigate methane emissions, promote remediation and restoration of well sites, benefit surrounding communities, and protect the climate. It is estimated that 30% percent of US methane emissions are from the oil and gas sector.

State agencies and initial (conditional) funding:

  • Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) – $134.2 million
  • Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) – $44.5 million
  • West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) – $37.8 million
  • California State Lands Commission (CSLC) – $21.9 million
  • Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) – $19.9 million
  • Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) – $17.4 million
  • Louisiana Department of Natural Resources (LDNR) – $15.6 million
  • New Mexico Department of Energy, Minerals, and Natural Resources (EMNRD) – $14.6 millions
  • Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet (KEEC) – $12.9 million
  • Colorado Department of Natural Resources (ECMC) – $12.6 million
  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYDEC) – $8.1 million
  • Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) – $5 million
  • State of Utah Department of Environmental Quality (UDEQ) – $2.7 million
  • State of Virginia Department of Energy (VAE) – $2.6 million

This funding for low-producing wells will provide technical and financial help to qualifying states to assist well owners and operators in voluntarily identifying, prioritizing, and eliminating methane emissions from marginal conventional wells, which frequently have disproportionately high emissions relative to production volumes. Funds can also be used for state monitoring of plugged wells and for restoration of well sites.

Technical assistance from the DOE and EPA for performing cost-effective methane monitoring and emission reductions is also available for states, the industry, and partners.


Specifics on implementation timelines, technologies, and measurement methods have not been released; additional information and grant opportunities will be announced in 2024 as part of the U.S. Methane Emissions Reduction Action Plan.

Project Scope

This grant funding package is expected to prevent the release of ~ 5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in methane emissions each year from an estimated 3,000 wells.

These marginal wells (less than 15 barrels oil /day or 90,000 cubic feet of gas/day annually) are the majority of producing U.S. wells. In 2021, ~715,000 wells — over 75% of the U.S. wells in operation — were categorized as low-production, supplying ~7% of U.S. oil and natural gas.

The MERP is a joint project of EPA and the DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM) and National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) to provide technical assistance and up to $1.3 billion in funding. The goals of the project are improving methane monitoring and the reduction of methane and other GHG and VOC emissions from the oil and gas sector.

Taking Action

For operators looking to proactively eliminate methane at the well site, BioSqueeze® provides the most effective solution to eliminate downhole leaks in the form of sustained casing pressure/vent flow/gas migration. BioSqueeze® ensures leaks are sealed as efficiently as possible to maximize impact while minimizing expenditure and has now been used to seal over 150 wells across the U.S. and Canada.

Have a well you'd like us to take a look at? Fill out the form below and our team will conduct a wholistic evaluation of the well and recommend next steps to eliminate annular leaks/gas migration free of charge.
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