By March 15, 2016 Read More →

Obama’s methane rules targeting vulnerable independent producers according to IPAA

New regs threaten threatens 20% of oil production, 13% of natural gas production from America’s smallest producers



The American oil and gas industry is pushing back on the Obama Administration’s new fugitive methane regulations, arguing that long-term efforts to reduce emissions have gone unrecognized.

The EPA is toughening regulations, hoping to reduce oil and gas methane emissions by 40 to 45 per cent. Methane is considered to be 25 times more potent greenhouse gas emission than carbon dioxide.

According to the Independent Petroleum Association of America’s (IPAA) Executive Vice President Lee Fuller who released the following statement on the Obama Administration’s plans to add costly and unnecessary new mandates on independent oil and natural gas producers:

“This new, aggressive proposal threatens about 20 percent of America’s oil production and 13 percent of its natural gas production from America’s smallest oil and natural gas wells,” said Lee Fuller, executive VP for the Independent Petroleum Association of America.

“These ‘marginal wells’ are already barely economic, producing small volumes a day. Added costs can shut down these wells. And the result is lost jobs, higher fuel prices, less clean-burning natural gas and more reliance on foreign oil.”

Fuller says there is no concrete data that justifies the risks of shutting down significant amounts of American oil and natural gas production.

“Every day, America’s oil and natural gas producers are working hard to develop America’s own abundant resources in a safe and environmentally sound manner,” he said in a press release.


(IPAA) Executive Vice President Lee Fuller

Fuller echoed the position of other industry groups by arguing that methane emissions from oil and gas production have fallen significantly in recent years and are continuing to drop, even as oil and natural gas production has risen.

“As technology has improved, the industry’s processes have become more efficient,” said Fuller.

“This proposal is designed to go after marginal wells and exceeds the administration’s own voluntarily set climate targets, making this new federal mandate unnecessary from the start.”

“Methane emissions from oil and natural gas production-related activities only account for a little over one percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Responsible energy development has and will continue to play a leading role in making the United States the world leader in greenhouse gas reductions.

IPAA addressed the costly impacts of targeting small producers by regulating existing sources in its December 2015 comments to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

“It’s clear this administration is kowtowing to environmental extremists whose only wish is to keep our nation’s affordable and abundant energy supplies away from those who need it the most by keeping it in the ground. With so many benefits from producing U.S. energy, a smarter national energy policy would encourage American oil and natural gas production, not penalize it,” said Fuller.

IPAA President and CEO Barry Russell explained in an op-ed in The Hill that reducing methane emissions has long been an industry priority, which has often gone unrecognized.

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