Following a recent Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announcement of proposed methane regulations on the oil and gas industry, U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), who chairs the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, condemned the rules as costly and unnecessary.
“There is no reason to impose regulations on our nation's oil and gas sector when the industry is already voluntarily reducing methane emissions,” Inhofe said. “The fact remains that methane emissions from oil and gas systems are only a mere 3.5 percent of total domestic greenhouse gas emissions, yet this administration has undertaken at least five significant efforts aimed at punitively attacking this industry for a non-existent problem.”
Inhofe cited a 40 percent reduction in methane emissions between 2006 and 2012, a period that also saw a 26 percent increase in oil and gas production. That reduction was achieved without any federal regulations, and Inhofe argued that the trend will continue.
“These costly mandates will hinder economic growth and job creation for no meaningful environmental benefit,” Inhofe said. “There is no need to target our domestic energy industry that has served a source of light during President Obama’s anemic economic recovery. EPA’s actions are politically driven, unnecessary, and geared solely toward getting these regulations out the door before President Obama leaves office.”