Policies to control greenhouse gas emissions from the state\u2019s natural gas utilities and industry are lagging behind those aimed at other sectors of the economy and should receive more emphasis, the Natural Resources Defense Council told state regulators earlier this month. In comments filed with the California Air Resources Board suggesting what should be included in the agency\u2019s scoping plan for carrying out AB 32--the state\u2019s greenhouse reduction law--the environmental organization recommended a host of policy changes for gas utilities aimed at maximizing the use of biomethane. The gas is produced at dairies, sewage treatment plants, and landfills. Burning it in place of natural gas will cut greenhouse gas emissions at a reasonable cost, NRDC said. One idea NRDC suggested was that the state establish a \u201cloading order\u201d for gas utilities similar to its loading order for electric utilities. The order should specify that to meet demand, gas utilities first pursue all efficiency measures and solar resources, such as solar water heating. Next, the industry should pursue biomethane. NRDC also suggested that the state set a renewable portfolio standard for gas utilities that would increase their requirement for using solar thermal energy and biomethane each year. The group further suggested that the California Public Utilities Commission provide open access to utility pipelines for biomethane, as well as pursue efforts to stimulate research and development and transfer of biomethane technology.