EPA using ozone regulations to target the Permian Basin production, threatening to reduce American petroleum production even further.
The Permian Basin, straddling Texas and New Mexico, is the world’s biggest oil field and accounts for over 40% of the nation’s petroleum production.
It is now in the regulatory crosshairs of the Biden administration’s Environmental Protection Agency . . . not because of carbon dioxide, but due to ozone.
The Environmental Protection Agency is weighing labeling parts of the Permian Basin as violating federal air quality standards for ozone — a designation that would force state regulators to develop plans for cracking down on that smog-forming pollution. The move, outlined in a regulatory notice, could spur new permitting requirements and scrutiny of drilling operations.
Ozone levels in the basin have surpassed a federal standard “for the last several years — really since the fracking boom took off in the Permian,” said Jeremy Nichols, climate and energy program director for WildEarth Guardians.
The conservation group formally petitioned EPA for the so-called non-attainment designation in March 2021 and, roughly six months later, warned the agency it intended to sue to force action. The designation “basically says you’ve got to clean up this mess or the consequences are going to get even more severe as far as restricting your ability to permit more pollution and more development,” he said.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott directly called on Biden to reign in his EPA, as this action is directly threatening the nation’s petroleum supply.
Abbott says such a finding could lead to “skyrocketing prices at the pump” by crimping oil and gas activity in the Permian basin, which is now producing more than 5mn b/d of crude and 20 Bcf/d of natural gas. Abbott argues Biden should intervene to halt the redesignation process, as a way to stick to his promises to lower gasoline prices for consumers.
“If you let the EPA move forward with untimely and unnecessary measures that accompany redesignation, that action will put at risk 25pc of American oil supply,” Abbott said in a letter to Biden today. “That, in turn, could substantially increase the cost of gasoline.”
It appears the Biden administration’s environmentalist goons have decided to use ozone regulations to try and ban fracking and will continue the approach to further control the production and use of fossil fuels.
Climate activists also want EPA to tighten ozone standards to indirectly regulate CO2 from fossil fuels. Joe Goffman, a champion of this idea, is leading EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation on an acting basis, and he’s in charge of ozone rules.
Mr. Goffman midwifed the Obama Clean Power Plan that had sought to conscript states into a force-fed green energy grid transition until the courts killed it. A 2014 article from E&E News described Mr. Goffman as the “U.S. EPA’s law whisperer. His specialty is teaching an old law to do new tricks.” How many more tricks does he have up his sleeve to keep gas prices high?
I find this interest in ozone levels fascinating in light of the Supreme Court’s decision about the EPA’s abuses of its power in regards to carbon dioxide.
For more on how vast the petroleum resources of the Permin Basin are, please check this video.DONATE
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