Stephan Nicoleau: The business case for curbing methane

Reducing methane emitted by agriculture, fossil fuels, and landfills is one of the most important and effective actions we can take to stabilize Earth’s climate. 

Methane reduction will require investing billions, changing policies, transforming practices, and altering personal consumption. But it can return far more in both climate and financial gains. In this presentation Stephan Nicoleau – general partner at FullCycle, founder of The Astra Project, and newly elected chair of Project Drawdown’s board of directors – goes beyond the science to explore the business case for methane reduction. 

Top Takeaways:

  1. Methane is a disproportionately large contributor to climate change, so it deserves priority in mitigation efforts.
  2. Major sources of methane are ruminant agriculture, rice growing, fossil fuel production, and organic waste.
  3. In many cases, methane mitigation provides a positive return on investment. 
  4. Mitigation strategies can be customized to sector and location to provide the greatest benefit.
  5. Corporate leaders can tap into the economic/environmental win-win by eliminating major greenhouse gas producers in their value chain or pressuring them to clean up their act; centering methane in their climate action; integrating sustainability and finance functions; elevating sustainability across all functions; providing a role model for and collaborating with other businesses; and investing in climate-mitigation startups.  
  6. Investors can help by identifying where their portfolios are supporting methane emissions and/or major methane emitters and course correcting as needed; tapping the expertise of climate investor networks; supporting development of assets that reduce methane production; capitalizing on opportunities to support systems that reduce waste; and incorporating methane considerations into institutional investing.
  7. Government can do its part by aligning regulations, policies, and incentives with methane mitigation best practices. 

“Here’s an opportunity for us to have outsized climate action per dollar of investment.”

Stephan Nicoleau

Useful Links:


The Astra Project

Drawdown Roadmap

Methane Leak Management

Methane Digesters

Landfill Methane Capture

Three Things You Can Do NOW: 

  1. Share the webinar recording with others through a text, email, or social media post.
  2. Identify one economically beneficial methane leverage point in your sphere of influence and pursue it.  
  3. Sign up for our biweekly newsletter to keep up with the latest Project Drawdown resources and opportunities.