EPA to Propose Rules Cutting Methane Emissions From Oil and Gas Drilling

17-Aug-2015

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday will propose the first-ever federal regulations to cut methane emissions from the nation’s oil and natural-gas industry, according to people familiar with the move, which is part of President Barack Obama’s climate agenda.

The EPA is expected to propose regulations aimed at cutting methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 40% to 45% over the next decade from 2012 levels, said a person familiar with the plan. That was the goal the agency said earlier this year it would pursue when it first unveiled its plans.

The move is part of a broader regulatory agenda Mr. Obama is pursuing as he seeks to make addressing climate change a legacy of his time in the White House. Earlier this month, EPA issued final rules cutting carbon emissions from power plants 32% by 2030 based on emissions levels from 2005.

Tuesday’s announcement also reflects the Obama administration’s middle-ground approach it’s taken so far with the oil and gas industry. The Interior Department said on Monday it has issued a permit to Royal Dutch Shell to drill for oil and natural gas in the Arctic Ocean, providing the company a long-sought victory and angering environmentalists who say the move goes counter to Mr. Obama’s commitment to addressing climate change. (by AMY HARDER, Wall Street Journal)

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