EPA Final Rules Amend Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards for Oil and Gas Industry
On Aug. 13, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued two final rules impacting the new source performance standards (NSPS) for the oil and gas industry pursuant to its authority under the Clean Air Act (CAA). The rules finalized amendments to the NSPS at 40 CFR part 60, subpart OOOO (promulgated in 2012) and OOOOa (promulgated in 2016) concerning the regulation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The first new rule contains policy amendments, while the second new rule contains technical amendments. Among other things, the final policy amendments remove the natural gas transmission and storage segment of the oil and gas industry from regulation and rescind methane-specific limits that apply to the industry's production and processing segments. The technical amendments include changes to the fugitive emissions requirements and allow certain owners and operators to apply for the use of an alternative means of emission limitation in lieu of the federal standards.