A new report by Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy has found that investing in the U.S. natural gas pipeline network could be crucial to helping the United States reach its 2050 net-zero emission goals.

“Fortifying and upgrading the system could prepare the existing infrastructure to transport zero-carbon fuels as they become available and, in the meantime, reduce harmful methane leaks from natural gas,” the report’s authors Erin Blanton, Melissa Lott and Kirsten Smith said.

The authors recommended new regulation around detecting and repairing methane leaks. They also recommended pipeline upgrades that would fortify the pipeline network and allow for the blended use of other compatible fuels on the natural gas grid.

“In the same way that the...