Industry efforts to get exemptions for shale gas from air rules U.S. EPA is putting together to regulate oil and gas operations invited backlash yesterday from a coalition of environmental groups.
The groups took issue with the American Petroleum Institute’s efforts to convince EPA and members of Congress that regulating emissions of benzene, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and, as a side product, methane during unconventional natural gas drilling would cost too much.
The environmental groups also expressed concern that the new rules are not retroactive and do not affect equipment already installed at wellpads.
EPA is expected to announce on April 17 new rules regulating emissions from point sources of oil and gas production systems. The draft rules, released last year, received so many comments, the agency had to postpone release of the final rules by two weeks. The draft is currently under review by the White House’s Office of Management and Budget.
At issue is gas leakage from the equipment across the industry, including conventional oil and gas wells, unconventional shale wells, storage tanks and compressor stations.
Although a few longtime oil- and gas-producing states such as Wyoming and Colorado already have rules with stringent emissions limits, most others do not…