Trump Administration Eases Methane Rules on Oil Industry

The Daily Signal | 8/29/2019 | Staff
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The Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday that it will undo some of the Obama administration’s regulations on methane, which it said could save oil and natural gas producers up to $123 million through 2025.

In 2016, the Obama administration imposed limits on methane emissions from oil and gas production after determining that methane emissions were increasing along with the boom in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, to reach oil or natural gas.

EPA - Revision - Federal - Register - Days

The EPA published the revision in the Federal Register, and it is now open to 60 days of public comment.

The proposed new rule is a result of an executive order from President Donald Trump that the administration said was designed to promote energy independence and economic growth.

Order - Agencies - Regulations - Development - Use

That order directs federal agencies to review existing regulations that potentially “burden the development or use of domestically produced energy resources,” including oil and natural gas.

“EPA’s proposal delivers on President Trump’s executive order and removes unnecessary and duplicative regulatory burdens from the oil and gas industry,” EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said in a prepared statement.

Trump - Administration - Methane - Industry - Incentive

“The Trump administration recognizes that methane is valuable, and the industry has an incentive to minimize leaks and maximize its use,” Wheeler said. “Since 1990, natural gas production in the United States has almost doubled while methane emissions across the natural gas industry have fallen by nearly 15%. Our regulations should not stifle this innovation and progress.”

Among other things, the proposed rule would remove all sources in the transmission and storage segment of the oil and natural gas industry from regulation, both for ozone-forming volatile organic compounds and for greenhouse gases.

Change - Methane - Requirements - Regulation

The change also would rescind the methane requirements in the 2016 regulation that apply...
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