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EPA Finalizes Methane Reporting Rule for Oil and Gas Firms

The Environmental Protection Agency has finalized greenhouse gas reporting requirements for methane emissions in the oil and gas sector (Law360, subscription).

What’s going on: “The EPA said the revisions, mandated by the Inflation Reduction Act, will improve the accuracy of emissions reporting from oil and gas systems[.] … The emissions reporting will help inform another IRA mandate being carried out by the EPA, a fee that certain oil and gas companies must pay if their methane emissions exceed certain thresholds starting this year.”

  • The rule will allow the use of technologies such as satellite systems to track, quantify and calculate methane emissions, according to the EPA.
  • Under the final regulation, businesses that emit more than 25,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent will be assessed a fine starting at $900 per metric ton for 2024 reported methane emissions and increasing every year thereafter.

The bigger picture: The greenhouse gas reporting program changes and fee assessment are “two key prongs of the new authority the IRA gave the federal government to tackle methane emissions. Other prongs include giving the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy $1 billion to provide technical and financial assistance for developing technologies that reduce methane emissions from oil and gas operations.”

  • This week’s rule follows the finalization last December of emissions standards for oil and gas infrastructure.
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