WorldWide Drilling Resource® 257 Caroline Street Punxsutawney, PA 15767 800-927-0560 • 814-427-2555 Fax: 814-427-5164 SERVINGTHECONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY Serving the Drilling Industry 23 WorldWide Drilling Resource ® OCTOBER 2020 Final Rules for the Gas and Oil Industry Adapted from Information by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler an- nounced two final rules for the gas and oil industry removing ineffective and duplicate requirements while streamlining others. The announcement was made in response to President Trump’s Executive Order on Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth, which directed the EPA to review, and if appropriate, revise the 2016 Oil and Natural Gas New Source Performance Standards (NSPS). The first rule, the “policy package,” determined the transmission and storage segment added to the NSPS was improper, and it was removed from the regulation. The 2016 rule for methane control requirements for the production and processing segments was deemed unnecessary and redundant. Since the pollution control methods gas and oil operators are required to use to reduce emissions of ozone-forming volatile organic compounds (VOCs) also reduce methane emissions, there is no need for a separate regulation for methane. The second rule, referred to as the “technical package” includes commonsense changes to the NSPS which directly ben- efits smaller gas and oil operators who rely on straightforward regulatory policy to run their businesses and provide Americans with reliable, affordable energy. More specifically, the rule: * Exempts low-production wells from expending significant funds to monitor leaks (leaks are called “fugitive emissions” in the rule). These low-producing wells are usually owned and operated by small businesses without the same access to capital as larger companies. This change respects the differences between wells producing large amounts of oil per day, and those producing less than 15 barrels a day instead of treating them the same. * Reduces monitoring of leaks at gathering and boosting compressor stations from quarterly to twice a year, which aligns with other monitoring requirements. * Improves cooperation with states by allowing industry to meet certain states’ requirements instead of complying with EPA’s requirements. This change means owners and operators in those states only have to comply with one set of regulations. * Changes recordkeeping and removes certain reporting requirements, reducing cost burden by roughly 25% per site. * Other technical changes that will simplify compliance. These rulemakings will reduce regulatory burdens for gas and oil companies while protecting human health and the envi- ronment. G&O