A new study on methane emissions in the United States shows that government estimated figures may be off by 50 percent, according to a report from the Associated Press.
The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Researchers monitored methane emissions during 2008 when hydraulic fracturing was just starting to boom across the U.S. Measurements were made in airplanes and from tall towers.
Researchers estimated that by their measurements the U.S. emitted 49 million tons of methane. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimated the nation emitted 32 million tons.
The majority of methane emissions were attributed to agricultural animals and oil and gas exploration.
The same group of researchers repeated their measurements in 2012 but have not processed the data.