This was the first event in a joint Resources for the Future (RFF) / Stanford Woods Institute / Stanford Natural Gas Initiative webinar series on New Research on the Science and Economics of Natural Gas.

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methane is the second most prevalent greenhouse gas in the United States (emitted from human activities). Recently the U.S. government announced intentions to further reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas sectors, which represent the largest source of methane emissions from industry in the nation. 

Experts at RFF and Stanford University have examined several key questions around sources of methane and opportunities for emissions abatement. At this webinar, Stanford’s Rob Jackson presented his work on methane leakage in natural gas distribution systems nationwide, showing how their leakage estimates compare to those of EPA. RFF’s Alan Krupnick shared highlights from RFF’s study of policy options for cost-effectively reducing methane emissions—including via trading programs—as well as discuss new findings about inactive wells, which have implications for future methane emissions.

Watch the full Webinar.


  • Rob Jackson, Professor, Earth System Science, Senior Fellow, Precourt Institute for Energy, and Senior Fellow, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
  • Alan J. Krupnick, Senior Fellow and Co-Director, RFF Center for Energy and Climate Economics