EPA Seeks to Revise Recently Issued Fracking Air Standards
In August 2012, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a rule establishing the first air emission control requirements applicable to hydraulically fractured natural gas wells. These rules impose significant requirements to prevent the release of volatile organic compounds and hazardous air pollutants from the wells, as well as from transmission and storage equipment. Industry and environmental groups have raised concerns about a number of provisions, challenging the rule in the D.C. Circuit and asking EPA to reconsider. EPA has agreed to reconsider certain of those issues, while the litigation is held in abeyance. Both the rule as promulgated and any modifications EPA may make could significantly impact this important domestic energy source.