EPA Announces Tougher Measures on Methane | Rigzone

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that it is strengthening its proposed standards to reduce methane and other air pollutants.

If finalized, the standards will protect workers and communities, maintain and create high-quality, union-friendly jobs, and spur innovation and manufacturing of critical new technologies in the United States, while delivering economic benefits. significant through increased recovery of wasted gas, the EPA noted. .

The updates, which complement the EPA’s proposed standards published in November 2021, reflect input and feedback from a wide range of stakeholders, and nearly half a million public comments, according to the EPA. . The organization said the updates would provide more comprehensive requirements to reduce pollution, “including from hundreds of thousands of existing oil and gas sources nationwide.”

“The United States is once again a global leader in addressing the climate crisis, and we must lead by example when it comes to tackling methane pollution – one of the biggest drivers of climate change,” EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan said in an EPA statement. statement.

“We are listening to public feedback and strengthening our proposed standards for the oil and gas industry, which will allow innovative new technologies to thrive while protecting people and the planet. Our tougher standards will work hand-in-hand with the historic level of resources from the Cut Inflation Act to protect our most vulnerable communities and put us on the path to meeting President Biden’s ambitious climate goals,” he added.

In response to the EPA’s proposed additional rule on methane, Frank Macchiarola, senior vice president of policy, economics and regulatory affairs at the American Petroleum Institute (API), said, “The API looks forward to reviewing the proposed rule in its entirety and will continue to work with the EPA in support of a final rule that is cost-effective, promotes innovation, and creates the regulatory certainty needed for long-term planning.” .

“Federal methane regulations designed to build on industry advancements can help accelerate emissions reductions while building reliable American energy. API member companies are continuously advancing and deploying new technologies to improve methane detection and reduction, and we support efforts to promote this innovation rather than inhibit it with overly prescriptive red tape,” added Macchiarola.

“Our industry is taking action and as a result, methane emissions relative to production have fallen 60% from 2011 to 2020. Industry-led initiatives, such as The Environmental Partnership, are helping to continue this progress in the goal of further reducing methane emissions in every U.S. basin,” he continued.

Also commenting on the proposed additional methane rule, the American Exploration and Production Council (AXPC) said, “Our industry is committed to working with the EPA on federal methane regulation, in a way that creates a regulatory certainty and enables domestic producers to supply America and the world with affordable and reliable energy.”

“While we are still digesting the full proposal, we appreciate the EPA’s inclusion from the outset of many of the recommendations we made for needed changes and clarifications up front. We still have concerns that would need to be addressed to make key provisions truly workable, but we will continue to work with the EPA on meaningful solutions,” AXPC added.

To contact the author, send an e-mail andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com

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