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Natural Gas

States Plan To Seek Broad Exemptions From EPA, DOI Fracking Policies

State officials are calling on EPA and the Department of the Interior (DOI) to carve out broad exemptions from their recently issued draft policies governing hydraulic fracturing operations for states that already have similar regulations in place governing the process, such as chemical disclosure requirements.

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EPA Enforcement Seen Shaping Fracking Policy Despite Regulatory Limits

EPA is increasingly using settlements in oil and gas enforcement cases to secure monitoring, permitting and other measures, in what industry sources say could be a strategy for shaping the agency's upcoming hydraulic fracturing policies given statutory and resource limitations that are making it difficult for EPA to craft formal regulatory policies.

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EPA’s Definition Of ‘Gas Wells’ Sparks Confusion Over Drilling Air Rules

EPA efforts to define natural gas “wells” that are subject to its new emissions control requirements for hydraulic fracturing operations is prompting concerns from both industry officials and environmentalists who say they are confused over what type of wells will be required to install the controls.

Activists fear that the uncertainty over the definition, as well as other provisions, may exempt scores of wells from first-time emissions control requirements, while industry fears the legal uncertainty could make it difficult to comply with the requirements.

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OTC Weighs Options For Delayed Model Oil, Gas Drilling Emissions Rule

The Ozone Transport Commission (OTC) of Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states is floating potential options for cutting oil and gas drilling emissions that could inform the group's long-delayed model emissions rule for the sector, which would impose additional air controls on the sector beyond those in EPA's recent drilling air rule.

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Ohio Fracking Rules Test Activists

Environmentalists are looking to the Ohio House and Gov. John Kasich (R) to strengthen pending legislation that would mandate disclosure of chemicals used in oil and gas drilling, an effort that could test activists' ability to get states to adopt stricter disclosure provisions than what the Interior Department (DOI) recently proposed in its draft rule for hydraulic fracturing operations on its lands.

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Key Group Weighs Guide To Press States To Strengthen Drilling Air Rules

Pushed by environmentalists, a key multi-stakeholder group that assesses the adequacy of state oil and gas regulations is weighing a series of measures that, if adopted, would encourage states to strictly regulate emissions from the sector even before recently issued EPA regulations take effect.

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GOP Senators Charge Planned EPA Fracking Study Exceeds Statutory Scope

Senate Republicans are questioning whether EPA's proposed study on the environmental and human health impacts of hydraulic fracturing could exceed the scope of Congress' mandate for the agency to assess drinking water impacts, saying the agency's attempt to assess emissions and equity impacts is beyond the scope of its authority.

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Academies' NRC Seeks Broad Review Of Currently Ignored Fracking Risks

The National Academies' National Research Council (NRC) is preparing to undertake a preliminary review of the potential human and environmental risks of shale gas development, and in particular hydraulic fracturing, following concerns from advisers that risk studies by EPA and other agencies have failed to address the process as a whole.

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Democrats Seek Gas Flaring Hearing

Top Democrats on the House Energy & Commerce Committee are urging the panel's GOP leaders to hold a hearing on flaring, or burning off, natural gas, saying that the practice wastes valuable gas resources and noting EPA's recent gas air rules do not require flaring controls at oil wells.

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EPA's Draft Diesel Fracking Guide Raises Questions Over States' Primacy

EPA's draft guidance for how agency permit writers should regulate hydraulic fracturing wells where diesel fuels are used is sparking concerns from industry that states that oversee their own delegated programs could face pressure to conform with EPA requirements or face the loss of their primacy under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).

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