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Tag Archives: Air

Ohio EPA Issues Draft Amendments to Air PTI/PTIO Rules

Posted in Environment
On November 13, 2014, Ohio EPA issued draft amendments to the rules in OAC Chapter 3745-31 governing the Permit-to-Install New Sources and Permit-to-Install and Operate Program. The draft amendments include: ·         reorganizational changes throughout OAC 3745-31-03 addressing exemptions and permits by rule (PBR) to clarify the difference between a true exemption from New Source Review and… Continue Reading

U.S EPA Proposes Amendments to Emissions Standards for Oil and Gas Sector

Posted in Energy
On July 17, 2014, U.S. EPA proposed amendments to the New Source Performance Standards for the Oil and Natural Gas Sector (40 CFR Part 60, Subpart OOOO). The amendments, proposed in response to several petitions for administrative reconsideration of the storage vessel provisions of Subpart OOOO, include the following: ·         Clarification of requirements for handling of… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Limits U.S. EPA’s Regulation of Carbon Emissions

Posted in Environment
On June 23, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision limiting U.S. EPA’s regulation of carbon emissions from stationary sources under the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Tailoring Rule (Tailoring Rule). The Tailoring Rule phases the applicability criteria to determine which stationary sources become subject to GHG emission permitting requirements under PSD and Title V Clean Air… Continue Reading

D.C. Circuit Strikes Down U.S. EPA Aggregation Memo

Posted in Energy, Environment
On May 30, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit struck down U.S. EPA’s attempt to limit the jurisdictional scope of the Sixth Circuit’s 2012 decision in Summit Petroleum Corp. v. EPA. In Summit, the Court held that “EPA’s determination that the physical requirement of adjacency [for purposes of aggregating multiple emission sources… Continue Reading

Groups Petition U.S. EPA to Limit HAP Emissions at Well Sites

Posted in Energy
On May 13, 2014, several environmental groups filed a petition requesting that U.S. EPA exercise its authority under Section 112 of the Clean Air Act to limit hazardous air pollutant emissions (HAPs) from oil and gas wells and associated equipment. The petition cites research suggesting that at least 100,000 tons of HAPs are emitted annually from… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Upholds EPA’s Transport Rule

Posted in Environment
On April 29, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court held that U.S. EPA did not violate the Clean Air Act (CAA) when it issued the Cross State Air Pollution Rule (Transport Rule), overturning the D.C. Circuit Court’s ruling in 2012. The Transport Rule, enacted pursuant to the “Good Neighbor” provision of the CAA, requires reduced emissions of… Continue Reading

New Methane Emissions Study

Posted in Energy, Environment
The Fort Worth Star Telegram has a good article on a new study out of the University of Texas finding that methane emissions from oil and gas development is not nearly as bad as environmentalists have claimed:  "So-called ‘green’ completion equipment is very effective at capturing methane emissions on new natural gas wells, but other… Continue Reading

US EPA Updates Oil and Gas Standards for Storage Tanks

Posted in Environment
On August 5, 2013, U.S. EPA issued updates to its 2012 New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for the oil and gas industry, amending the performance standards for emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from storage tanks. Updates to the 2012 NSPS include clarification of the types of tanks that are considered “affected facilities,” alternative emission limits for… Continue Reading

Ohio Court Upholds Air Toxics Rule, Regulation of Additional Toxics Possible

Posted in Environment
On June 27, 2013, the Ohio Court of Appeals for the Tenth Appellate District issued a decision regarding the lawfulness of Ohio EPA’s adoption of the Air Toxics Rule (OAC 3745-114-01), pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Chapter 3704.03(F)(3)(c). See Sierra Club v. Koncelik, 2013-Ohio-2739. While the adoption of the Air Toxics Rule was, in large part, upheld,… Continue Reading

Air Pollution Rule Delayed Again

Posted in Environment
The USEPA announced that it is again delaying the issuance of its proposed rules regulating air emissions from hydraulically fractured wells.  The proposed NSPS and NESHAP rules were scheduled for issuance on April 3 according to the Consent Decree issued in WildEarth Guardians, et al. v. Jackson.  However, in response to more than 156,000 comments… Continue Reading

New Air Regs Proposed

Posted in Environment
U.S. EPA has published a proposed new rule intended to broadly impact our industry entitled, "Oil and Natural Gas Sector:  New Source Performance Standards and National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants Reviews."  We reported on it previously here (Beware of Greeks Bearing Gifts).  Comments are due October 24, 2011.  In addition, U.S. EPA has… Continue Reading

New Aggregation Claims

Posted in Energy, Environment
On July 21, 2011, Citizens For Pennsylvania’s Future (“CPF”) filed a lawsuit against Ultra Resources, Inc. (“Ultra”) in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania alleging that Ultra violated the Clean Air Act ("CAA") by not applying for and obtaining the proper permit to construct and operate its natural gas wells,… Continue Reading

Smog?

Posted in Energy, Environment
The NYT is reporting on the potential for increased smog due to oil and gas operations:  "Thousands of natural gas wells are expected to be drilled in Pennsylvania over the next few years, requiring a fleet of construction equipment, diesel engines and compressor stations. Together, they could be a large new source of smog-forming emissions… Continue Reading

PA Air Study Finalized

Posted in Energy, Environment
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has released the findings of a third study showing no emissions levels that would be of public concern:  "’The results show there are no emission levels that would be of concern to the health of residents living and working near these operations,’ DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. ‘They are… Continue Reading

New Air Study

Posted in Energy, Environment
A new study has been in the news lately claiming that natural gas likely will contribute more to global warming than burning coal because it is vented to the atmosphere in far larger quantities than previously thought (see, e.g., this article in the NYT).  The problems with the study appear to be numerous, however, including… Continue Reading

Another PA Air Study

Posted in Energy, Environment
We reported previously here on a study done by Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection finding no air emissions that would be a cause for concern.  WHYY is reporting on another study with similar results:  "The survey observed four Susquehanna County sites from August to October. DEP official Mark Carmon said the study found elevated levels… Continue Reading

CA Carbon Trading Program

Posted in Energy, Environment
The LAT is reporting that California regulators at the Air Resources Board have adopted the country’s first carbon trading program:  "’This is an historic venture,’ said Mary Nichols, chairwoman of the California Air Resources Board, as the panel voted 9 to 1 to approve some 3,000 pages of regulations and supporting documents, crafted over three… Continue Reading

New Texas Air Rules Proposed

Posted in Energy, Environment
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) has announced that it is proposing new rules to amend the air emissions regulations that govern oil and gas facilities.  "The rule proposal updates administrative and technical requirements, and includes enforceable monitoring, sampling, and record keeping requirements. This proposal helps the agency make certain that oil and gas… Continue Reading

EPA Proposes to Include Production Sources in GHG Reporting Rule

Posted in Energy, Environment
U.S. EPA is proposing to add emissions sources to its mandatory greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting program, including onshore petroleum and natural gas production, processing, transmission and storage facilities (see here).  Its rationale:  "Fugitive and vented GHG emissions from this industry (i.e., the petroleum and natural gas industry sector) are the second largest source of human-made methane… Continue Reading

Clean Air Act Settlement

Posted in Energy, Environment
U.S. EPA has published notice of a proposed consent decree with WildEarth Guardians and San Juan Citizens Alliance filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia under citizen suit provisions of the Clean Air Act (WildEarth Guardians, et al. v. Jackson, No. 1:09– CV–00089–CKK).  Among other things, if approved it would… Continue Reading

Additional Stay for NSR Rule

Posted in Environment
Back on December 19, 2008, USEPA issued a final rule revising the requirements of the major NSR program regarding the treatment of fugitive emissions (‘‘Fugitive Emissions Rule’’). 73 FR 77882.  The final rule required fugitive emissions to be included in determining whether a physical or operational change results in a major modification only for sources… Continue Reading