AUSTIN – The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment Policy Analyst Leigh Thompson issued the following statement on the rule proposed this week by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to cut methane emissions from oil and natural-gas drilling:

“Without interference from the Federal Government methane emissions from hydraulically fractured natural gas wells fell by 73 percent between 2011 and 2013, and from 2008 to 2012 methane emissions from natural gas systems have fallen by 14.3 percent,” said Thompson. “Notably, since 2008 natural gas production rates have nearly quadrupled—making the U.S. the world’s leading producer of natural gas. This steep reduction should come as no surprise given that methane is the primary component of natural gas. Any loss of methane equals a direct loss in profit for producers. 

“Further, the science is not on the EPA’s side—the warming potential of methane has been overstated by a factor of as much as 100 according to some scientists. This new regulation is nothing more than a thinly veiled attack on one of the most successful industries in the nation.”

Leigh Thompson is a policy analyst with the Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit, free-market research institute based in Austin, Texas.

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