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Clean Air Act: Hydraulic Fracturing Emissions

This guide supports Dr. Preston McLane's class on the Clean Air Act.


The Environmental Protection Agency has continued its rulemaking for the oil and natural gas sector by proposing to regulate "flowback" gases that are not already regulated.

From Proposed Rule, Oil and Natural Gas Sector: Reconsideration of Additional Provisions of New Source Performance Standards, 79 FR 41752 (July 17, 2014):  

On August 16, 2012, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published final new source performance standards for the oil and natural gas sector (77 FR 49490). The Administrator received petitions for administrative reconsideration of certain aspects of the standards. Among issues raised in the petitions were time-critical issues related to certain storage vessel provisions and well completion provisions. On September 23, 2013, the EPA published final amendments (78 FR 58416) as a result of reconsideration of issues related to implementation of the storage vessel provisions. Following that action, the Administrator again received petitions for administrative reconsideration pertaining to the storage vessel provisions. In this notice, the EPA is announcing proposed amendments and clarifications as a result of reconsideration of certain issues related to well completions and additional issues pertaining to storage vessels. The proposed amendments also address other issues raised for reconsideration and make technical corrections and amendments to further clarify the rule.

The Bureau of Land Managment has also begun rulemaking on Waste Mine Methane Capture, Use, Sale or Destruction (79 FR 23923).  The ANPR Summary provides:

"The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) requests comments and suggestions that might assist the agency in the establishment of a program to capture, use, or destroy waste mine methane that is released into the mine environment and the atmosphere as a direct consequence of underground mining operations on Federal leases for coal and other minerals."  The ANPR only addresses mines, but it may be useful to follow the rulemaking process.

Click for additional photos: Hydraulic Fracking in Colorado (Brennan Linsley, AP)

This EPA Docket ID was created in April 2012.  It contains the proposed and final rules and accompanying materials from the 2012, 2013 and 2014 rulemakings.

Code of Federal Regulations / Federal Register

GPOAccess has not yet released the 2014 edition of 40 CFR Part 60.  Below is the 2013 edition for Part 60, Subpart OOOO, with amendments and proposed rules published since the release of the 2013 edition in the Federal Register. Dockets

American Petroleum Institute v. EPA, Docket No. 12-01405 (D.C. Cir. Oct 15, 2012) (Petition for Review of Aug. 16, 2012 Final Rule).

Search Dockets for other Petitions from 2012 and 2013 using the search query: "oil and natural gas sector" "new source performance".

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