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EPA retreats from Obama-era methane emission rules

Joe Mont | May 31, 2017

Amid reports that President Donald J. Trump plans to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement, an international climate accord comes news that a controversial environmental rule is also on borrowed time.

The Environmental Protection Agency this week announced it will stay rules intended to curb methane emissions from oil and gas explorations, in particular fracking projects and both new and modified wells.

The performance standard imposed by the Obama Administration last year establishes new source performance standards for greenhouse gas emissions and volatile organic compound emissions from the oil and natural gas sector. Among the requirements was to detect and repair leaks of methane and other pollutants, certifying those fixes by a professional engineer.

In an April 18 letter to oil and gas companies, the EPA reported that it would reconsider of the fugitive emission requirements.

Now, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has issued a 90-day...

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