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Obama-Era Methane Waste Rule on Hold in Wyoming (Reg & Leg)
BLM
Date: 2018-04-06
In the Cowboy State, the Casper Star-Tribune reports federal Judge Scott Skavdahl ruled Wednesday that Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Obama administration regulations curbing the flaring of excess methane gas from wells, as well as more labor-intensive checks for accidental leaks, make "little sense" because those requirements will soon disappear under the Trump EPA. Although the court didn't comment on the Obama era methane regulations, the judge claimed his decision "will provide certainty and stability" while BLM completes its rule making process. The Environmental Defense Fund, which favors methane rules, vowed to appeal. (Source: Wyoming Public Media, Casper Star Tribune, 5 April, 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane Waste,  Methane,  Obama Methane Rule,  


Obama Methane Venting/Flaring Rule Rollback Stalled (Reg & Leg)
BLM,Obama Methane Rule
Date: 2017-12-15
In Washington, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) reports it is delaying implementation of the (Methane) Waste Prevention Rule to Jan. 17, 2019, and suspending rule provisions already in effect due to "concerns regarding the statutory authority, cost, complexity, feasibility and other implications" of the Obama-era 2016 Venting and Flaring Rule, according to a Kallanish report,

The rule, which came into effect in January, covered drilling on federal and Native American lands, and was to be fully operational by Jan. 17, 2018. The rule forces energy companies to capture methane that's burnt off or "flared" at drilling sites on public lands during production because it pollutes the environment. An estimated $330 million a year in methane is wasted through leaks or intentional releases on federal lands, enough to power about 5 million homes a year. (Source: BLM, Kallanish Energy, 11 Dec., 2017) Contact: Bureau of Land Management, www.blm.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News BLM,  Methane Rule,  Obama Methane Rule,  


Court Orders Reinstatement of Obama Methane Rule (Reg & Leg)
Obama Methane Rule
Date: 2017-10-06
In San Francisco, U.S. District Judge Elizabeth Laporte on Wednesday ordered the Interior Department to immediately reinstate an Obama-era regulation aimed at restricting harmful methane emissions from oil and gas production on federal lands.

The order comes as the Department of Interior (DoI) is moving to delay the rule until 2019, on the grounds that it is too burdensome to industry. The DoI tried earlier to postpone part of the rule set to take effect next year. The ruling found the DoI failed to give a "reasoned explanation" for the changes and offered no details on why an earlier analysis by the Obama administration was faulty.

The rule forces energy companies to capture methane that's burnt off or "flared" at drilling sites on public lands during production because it pollutes the environment. An estimated $330 million a year in methane is wasted through leaks or intentional releases on federal lands, enough to power about 5 million homes a year. (Source: DoI, Various Media, 4 Oct., 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane Emissions,  Obama Methane Rule,  


Pruitt Stymied by Order to Enforce Obama Methane Rule (Reg & Leg)
EPA
Date: 2017-08-04
In Washington, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has issued the latest ruling after a ruling by the court in July that the EPA unlawfully tried to delay implementing the Obama-era methane pollution rule which sets limits for GHG emissions for the energy industry, and requires companies to identify and fix leaks.

In June, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt sought a two-year pause on the new methane rule so the agency could "look broadly" at regulations and "review their impact" with the end view of abolishing the Obama era legislation. "Today's issuance of the mandate by the full D.C. Circuit protects families and communities across America under clean air safeguards that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt sought to unlawfully tear down," said Peter Zalzal, lead attorney for the Environmental Defense Fund, one of the groups that challenged the EPA. (Source: Newsmax, EDF, Various Others, , EPA, 1 Aug., 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  Scott Pruitt,  Methane Emissions,  


Pruitt's Suspension of Obama Methane Rule Nixed (Reg & Leg)
EPA
Date: 2017-07-07
In a 2-to-1 decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has held that the EPA cannot suspend an Obama administration rule to restrict methane emissions from new oil and gas wells.

EPA administrator Pruitt, a noted climate change skeptic, had imposed a 90-day moratorium, which he later extended to two years, on enforcement of parts of the Obama era methane regulation and argued that his action was not subject to court review. But the appeals court disagreed and ruled that the EPA's decision was "unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious." The court ruled that the agency lacked authority under the Clean Air Act to block the methane rule but did have authority to reverse the methane regulations. The court also ruled that the agency would have to undertake a new rule-making process to undo the Obama regulation. (Source: Various Media, NY Times, 3 July, 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  Methane Rule,  EPA,  


Obama Methane Rule Being Enforced During Re-Write (Reg & Leg)
Methane Rule
Date: 2017-06-23
In a statement, U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said parts of an Obama-administration methane rule will be enforced even though his agency is in the process of re-writing the controversial legislation that the oil and natural gas industry find "burdensome." Zinke promised to take public comments during the rewrite process to make sure the final rule curtails wasteful flaring while reducing the cost burden to the oil and natural gas industry.

The methane rule, which was finalized in the dying days of the Obama administration, mandates that energy companies capture rather than flare methane which is about 25 times more potent at trapping heat than CO2 and make up approximately 9 pct of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, according to EPA estimates. (Source: Smart Brief, AP, 21 June, 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  Methane Rule,  GHG,  Greenhouse Gas,  


EPA Issues 90-day Stay on Landfill Methane Rules (Reg & Leg)
EPA
Date: 2017-05-26
In the nation's capital, the U.S. EPA reports a 90-day administrative stay for the August 2016 New Source Performance Standards and Emissions Guidelines for municipal solid waste landfills. This stay will allow EPA to reconsider certain aspects of the new source standards and emission guidelines for existing landfills.

Consistent with President Trump's Energy Independence Executive Order, EPA will continue to review these actions to ensure that they protect the environment and enable a growing economy.

Municipal solid waste landfills receive non-hazardous waste and under updated rules are required to install and operate landfill gas collection systems that monitor landfill gas/methane emissions.

Rule details are available HERE. (Source: US EPA, News Release, 23 May, 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  Landfill Gas,  Obama Methane Rule,  


GOP Fails in Obama Methane Rule Repeal Effort (Reg & Leg)
BLM Methane Rule
Date: 2017-05-12
In Washington, the U.S. Senate on Wednesday failed to muster the necessary votes to repeal President Obama's methane rules for oil and gas drillers on federal lands. The U.S. House of Representatives passed a similar resolution using its authority under the Congressional Review Act back in February. Under the review act, the Senate had until Thursday -- May 11th -- to pass the rule.

The Bureau of Land Management rule for methane is considered duplicative due to an existing EPA rule requiring drillers to control their methane emissions from natural gas and oil wells. (Source: PBS, Inside EPA, 10 May, 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News BLM Methane Rule. Methane,  

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