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Tag Archives: Clean Air Act

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

Posted in Energy, Environment
On October 15, 2018, USEPA proposed amendments to the new source performance standards (NSPS) for the oil and natural gas sector at 40 CFR Part 60, Subpart OOOOa (“Subpart OOOOa”). The proposed amendments to Subpart OOOOa are a result of USEPA’s reconsideration of certain aspects of Subpart OOOOa in 2017. Specifically, the proposed amendments address… Continue Reading

5th Circuit Holds Statute of Limitations Does Not Apply to Government’s Injunctive Relief Claim for Clean Air Act Preconstruction Permit Violation

Posted in Energy, Environment
On October 1, 2018, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal of claims for civil penalties for violations of the Clean Air Act’s (“CAA”) major source Preconstruction permit requirement (CAA § 165(a); 42 U.S.C. § 7475(a)) because the claims were filed more than five years after the claim accrued, but held that the… Continue Reading

States and Industry Groups Challenge U.S. EPA’s Oil & Gas Methane Regulations

Posted in Energy, Environment
In July, the State of North Dakota filed suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit challenging U.S. EPA’s final rule amending the Agency’s 2012 New Source Performance Standards for the Oil and Gas Sector. Opposition to the amendments, which became effective on August 2, 2016, has increased significantly since North Dakota… Continue Reading

U.S. EPA Amends GHG Reporting Requirements for Oil and Natural Gas Sector

Posted in Energy, Environment
On October 22, 2015, U.S. EPA published a final rule amending the greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting requirements for the petroleum and natural gas systems source category, 40 CFR Part 98, Subpart W. The final amendments to Subpart W require the reporting of GHG emissions from completions and workovers of oil wells with hydraulic fracturing as… Continue Reading

USEPA Lowers Ozone Emissions Standard

Posted in Energy, Environment
On October 1, 2015, U.S EPA issued a final rule lowering the national ozone emissions standard from 75 parts per billion (ppb) to 70 parts per billion. This more stringent standard will require states to submit compliance plans to U.S. EPA that could significantly impact industry operations across the country.  Based on monitored air quality… Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Limits EPA Authority to Regulate Power Plant Emissions

Posted in Environment
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court held that EPA must consider compliance costs before regulating hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) from coal- and oil-fired power plants.  Section 112 of the Clean Air Act authorizes EPA to regulate HAPs from power plants if the Agency finds that regulation is “appropriate and necessary.” 42 U.S.C. § 7412(n)(1)(A).  In 2012,… Continue Reading

Sixth Circuit Holds U.S. EPA Can Question Pre-Construction Emission Projections

Posted in Environment
On March 28, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit held that U.S.EPA has the authority to challenge pre-construction emissions projections and may bring an enforcement action against a company operating without a construction permit.  Under the Clean Air Act, a proposed project that would result in a “significant emissions increase” constitutes… Continue Reading

Final NSPS Rule

Posted in Energy, Environment
After publication in today’s Federal Register, U.S. EPA’s final air emission rules became effective for oil and gas production and natural gas transmission and storage facilities. The rules implement New Source Performance Standards (“NSPS”) for volatile organic compounds (“VOC”) and sulfur dioxide (“SO2”), and National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (“NESHAP”). The new NSPS… Continue Reading

Air Act Aggregation Win for Summit Petroleum

Posted in Energy, Environment
Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued its decision in the Summit Petroleum case rejecting USEPA’s attempt to aggregate production and processing facilities as one “stationary source” for Title V permitting. This decision overturns USEPA’s long-standing requirement that permitting authorities must look at the “functional relationship” between two or more separate… Continue Reading

New Clean Air Act Citizen Suit Ruling

Posted in Environment
On May 25, 2012, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in Sierra Club, et al. v. Korleski in which the court determined that the Clean Air Act does not authorize citizen suits against the Ohio EPA for alleged violations of emission standards or limitations. The case involved the Sierra Club’s challenge of… Continue Reading

EPA Issues Updated Air Pollution Standards for Oil and Natural Gas

Posted in Environment
Today USEPA issued its final rules that provide New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for volatile organic compounds (VOC) and sulfur dioxide, and National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for oil and gas production and natural gas transmission and storage. Integral to the rules is the requirement that producers capture VOC emissions and methane during… Continue Reading

AEP v. Conn – No GHG Nuisance Claim

Posted in Environment
The Supreme Court issued its ruling today in the long-awaited climate change nuisance suit.  The Court concluded that federal common law nuisance claims cannot be brought against utilities for their greenhouse gas emissions.  In an 8-0 decision, the Court ruled that the Clean Air Act and rules authorized by the Act displace the federal common law cause of action and that… Continue Reading

Proposed Consent Decree Filed on Residual Risk Standards

Posted in Environment
According to the provisions of a proposed consent decree filed July 6 (Sierra Club v. Jackson, N.D. Cal., No. 09-152), USEPA will issue residual risk emissions standards to address the risk posed by hazardous air pollutants emitted by 28 industrial source categories that have already had MACT standards issued. Under the terms of the proposed… Continue Reading

Ohio EPA Violated Clean Air Act

Posted in Environment
The United Stated District Court for the Southern District of Ohio ruled on February 2, 2010 that the Ohio EPA was in violation of the Clean Air Act by improperly exempting from regulation businesses that emitted less than 10 tons per year of certain air pollutants.  A copy of the case can be found here.… Continue Reading

EPA Announces More Stringent Emissions Limits for Sulfur Dioxide

Posted in Environment
Climate change is not the end-all-be-all of regulating our air, says EPA. Yesterday, the EPA announced a proposed rule that will change the primary National Ambient Air Quality Standards for sulfur dioxide.  This rule would eliminate the current 24-hour and annual standards and replace them with a new, more stringent, one-hour standard of between 50 and… Continue Reading