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gas flaring

State AGs Call Oil & Gas Methane Rules ‘EPA Overreach,’ File Lawsuits

gas flaringNew oil and gas sector methane emissions standards will be too costly to the industry and represent “EPA overreach,” according to Texas and North Dakota, which are suing the EPA to block the methane rule.

The final methane standards, released in May, require the industry to repair leaks and limit emissions from wells, pumps and other equipment use in oil and gas production. The final rule also removes an exemption for low production wells and requires leak-monitoring surveys twice as often at compressor stations.

The agency says the standards will reduce 510,000 short tons of methane in 2025. It estimates the final rule will yield climate benefits of $690 million in 2025, which the EPA says will outweigh estimated costs of $530 million that same year.

While environmental groups say the new law will protect people and the environment from air pollution, states and industry groups say the methane crackdown is another example of federal overreach.

“Not only is this a gross demonstration of federal overreach, but the EPA has failed to consider the steep cost of this rule on the existing industry,” according to a statement from Texas attorney general Ken Paxton announcing the state’s lawsuit, which has been consolidated with North Dakota’s.

Business groups including the National Association of Manufacturers and the US Chamber of Commerce have also attacked the rule and said it will “deprive manufacturers and other energy consumers of critical energy supplies, increase operating costs and threaten international competitiveness.”

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