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EPA Sends Helicopters Over Permian Basin Oil Fields, Supposedly Seeking Methane “Super-Emitters”

EPA Sends Helicopters Over Permian Basin Oil Fields, Supposedly Seeking Methane “Super-Emitters”

Climate intimidation.

Legal Insurrection readers should remember my report on the Permian Basin earlier this summer. The area, straddling Texas and New Mexico, is the world’s most extensive oil field and accounts for over 40% of the nation’s petroleum production.

It is also in the Biden administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulatory crosshairs. Now the agency is flying helicopters over the area, supposedly looking for “methane super-emitters.”

The helicopter flyovers surveying thousands of oil and gas operations in the Permian Basin region of West Texas and southeastern New Mexico began Monday and will continue through Aug. 15. The flyovers will allow the agency to identify emitters of large amounts of methane and excess emissions of volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, according to a news release.

The Permian Basin — which includes the cities Odessa and Midland — accounts for 40% of the nation’s oil supply.

The region has produced large quantities of methane and VOCs over the years, which contribute to climate change and poor air quality, Region 6 Administrator Earthea Nance said.

The move appears to be a fishing expedition…for money, citations, and dramatic media pronouncements.

The flyovers will continue until Aug. 15, the agency announced yesterday. Any violations uncovered will be met with “significant penalties,” along with steps to prevent future infractions and follow-up monitoring to make sure that any emission fixes are working, according to a news release.

The basin, which spans some 75,000 square miles in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico “accounts for 40% of our nation’s oil supply and has produced large quantities of dangerous [volatile organic compounds] and methane over the years, contributing to climate change and poor air quality,” Earthea Nance, head of EPA’s Dallas-based regional office, said in the release. “The flyovers are vital to identifying which facilities are responsible for the bulk of these emissions and therefore where reductions are most urgently needed.

Regular Americans who aren’t financially or emotionally invested in the anti-CO2 dogma recognize the EPA’s move for what it is: Climate intimidation.

“It’s just a way to intimidate the oil and gas industry,” Steve Milloy, member of former President Donald Trump’s EPA transition team, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “The EPA’s conduct is outrageous.”

A technician on board the helicopter will record the time, GPS location and other details regarding the source of emissions after detecting hydrocarbon emissions. The federal agency will use this data to locate the source of the emissions and then question facility managers about the violations.

…“Biden’s EPA is doing everything to make gas prices higher,” Milloy said.


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Maybe. I also heard that the border crossings are not only bringing in Fentanyl (sic?) but also small amounts of nuclear material to be assembled elsewhere in the US interior. It would make more sense that these aerial maneuvers are really nuke sniffers.

    taurus the judge in reply to oldvet50. | August 11, 2022 at 8:18 am

    No, that’s urban legend/Hollywood stuff

    gonzotx in reply to oldvet50. | August 11, 2022 at 9:03 am

    Hardly they could care less

    When I first moved to CA, they were flying helicopters spraying malathion over everything in LA County. As they did recently with the lock downs and mask mandates, once they started they wouldn’t stop. So Pasadena gave the country a cease and desist order and ordered the police to order their helicopters to block or else force those county helicopters down should they persist. The spraying ended quickly. Just like our Health Ghoul was forced by acclamation to retract her planned order to re-impose masking on the way to further shutdowns. The growing scandals didn’t help her either.

    nordic prince in reply to oldvet50. | August 11, 2022 at 1:10 pm

    If that were the case, Brandon would probably recruit them.

    Ironclaw in reply to oldvet50. | August 11, 2022 at 3:02 pm

    They don’t give a crap if we get blown up with nukes. But god forbid someone burn some oil or release some methane.

Shut down the EPA, another Nixon mistake.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to MAJack. | August 11, 2022 at 9:05 am

    “Richard Nixon” is the Niagara Falls / Susquehanna Hats phrase for every leftist despite Affirmative Action, EPA, wage and price controls, and other things they love.

      Which just goes to show that you never concede a fraction of an inch to the vile left. That will just fuel their hatred.

        Arminius in reply to Arminius. | August 11, 2022 at 8:20 pm

        Further t9 my last. To the leftist establishment it’s never about what they claim it’s about. It’s always really about power. It’s what Latinos are learning, and why they’re shifting to the Republican side of the aisle. Blacks are learning, but far more slowly. Government never loves you. They’ll pretend to as long as you’re usefull.

        I doubt transgenders will ever learn as gender dysphoria is a mental disorder and I don’t care what the DSM5 says (and really dysphoria is an ambiguous term and it isn’t clear that it isn’t a mental disorder). In fact, if it weren’t a mental disorder then transgenders wouldn’t be nearly so useful.

        It’s a simple fact that gender dysphoria is in the same category as species dysphoria, body integrity disorder, and addiction. if people suffer enough trauma in early childhood (Adverse Childhood Experiences or ACEs) then they no longer want to be who they were born as. They have poor coping skills as a consequence, as they simply can’t deal with reality. Rather, reality must be eliminated and replaced with their delusions. But reality can’t be eliminated, so their disorders leave them unable to maintain employment, relationships with friends and family, and eventually with a very high suicide rate.

        Which is why the left can exploit them. Their claim to absolute power is that no one can live in reality but we all must conform to their delusions. If we don’t they’ll commit suicide and the blood will be on the hands of the “heartless” “reich wing” Republicans.

        In fact, there only way to help transgenders is through counseling. Only through counseling can they learn to accept themselves and the world as it is.

        “’Transgender, non-binary, and gender nonconforming San Franciscans are eighteen times more likely to experience homelessness compared to the general population, and we know that the rates are even higher for our minority trans communities,’ said Mayor Breed in a Tuesday statement. ‘With one of the largest TGNC populations in the country, we not only must ensure that all San Franciscans have access to housing and essential resources through continued investments, but we can show the country that we continue to be a leader on supporting and protecting our trans communities.’”

        I’m going to take Breed’s statistics as given. Does anyone imagine that trans people experience a homeless rate that’s 18 times higher than the general population because freaking San Francisco (!!!) is a ground zero for white-hot “transphobic” bigotry and discrimination?

        Raise your hands if you do.

        Or, perhaps the DSM4 and all previous versions got it right when it labeled the syndrome gender identity disorder. And transgenders still exhibit the behaviors described in every textbook on psychiatric nursing I’ve every perused published up until at least 2915 and perhaps even later.

        If it weren’t a mental disorder it wouldn’t even have a chapter devoted to it (along with other forms of dysphoria and addiction) in psychiatric nursing textbooks. It’s not a problem you can fix by “affirming” the mentally ill in their delusions and pretending it’s a problem of money.

        But fixing the problem is the opposite of the point. Destroying civilization for fun and profit is the point.

    MattMusson in reply to MAJack. | August 11, 2022 at 11:33 am

    Obama sent the EPA out to Texas to find reasons to shutdown fracking. They did everything they could but could not find a link between methane in water or Earthquakes tied to fracking.

    It turns out Gasland was filmed near Burning Springs, PA an area where there was methane in water in colonial times. And, Earthquakes are caused by injection wells, not fracked wells.

    So, the EPA could not come up with a genuine problem.

    If they do find methane emmiters in West Texas, it would be from a cracked wellhead or a Santa Gertrudis Steer.

taurus the judge | August 11, 2022 at 8:06 am

Its time to move on from 2020 and accept that this is what “the people” really wanted because 81 million of them said so.

All who truly believe that should email me about some really good upcoming land deals.

Add the EPA to the list of federal departments Trump will eliminate in his second term. They are making it so easy. Next, the Department of Education will call for the arrest of parents protesting CRT in schools before school committees. On the list you go.

They are using carbon free electric helicopters, right?

Steven Brizel | August 11, 2022 at 8:33 am

Where in the legislation empowering EPA is there any express authority for such intimidation?

The EPA rates helicopters?

What’s next? F-35s to enforce their whims?

    WTPuck in reply to Gosport. | August 11, 2022 at 11:46 am

    I’m sure they already have the guns and ammo at the ready.

    Every fed dept. should be forensically audited before they are shut down.

    SeiteiSouther in reply to Gosport. | August 11, 2022 at 12:26 pm

    The F-35, a boondoggle of a plane for a boondoggle of an agency.

    Gosport in reply to Gosport. | August 11, 2022 at 12:30 pm

    Ho-lee geez.

    As of July 2016, 11 U.S. non-military federal agencies owned 924 aircraft, which made it the world’s 9th largest air force. This inventory included:

    495 airplanes,
    414 helicopters,
    14 unmanned aircraft systems (commonly known as drones), and
    1 glider.

    Of the 11 civilian agencies, the Department of State owned the most aircraft (248). WTF does State need 248 aircraft for??

      Roy in Nipomo in reply to Gosport. | August 11, 2022 at 12:44 pm

      “WTF does State need 248 aircraft for??” A fast getaway if Trump (or similar) is elected in 2024. Remember, in banana republics, gov’t crooks flee the country with their ill-gotten gains whenever there is a change of regime.

If LPG weren’t so damned expensive these days I’d recommend everyone in the area with a gas grill release a tank of LPG without lighting it up when intel notes helicopter surveys are in progress. But, the way the wind usually blows they will have to have the chopper really close to the operation before all traces are blown away.

    MattMusson in reply to Edward. | August 11, 2022 at 11:35 am

    Because it is so damned expensive, drillers want to sell it. Not, let it get away free.

    henrybowman in reply to Edward. | August 13, 2022 at 2:28 am

    If cow farts are indeed a serious producer of methane, someone should arrange to fly these planes over Washington DC. Washington would immediately be tagged as the nation’s #1 methane threat due to all the bullshit per square mile.

E Howard Hunt | August 11, 2022 at 10:39 am

I love the smell of methane in the morning!

Antifundamentalist | August 11, 2022 at 11:10 am

Going after Texas conservative money.

The operators in the Permian should be able to afford a few surface-to-air missiles. Just sayin’.

If the methane emissions are so significant, we should be building a pipeline to capture them.

George_Kaplan | August 11, 2022 at 7:29 pm

Aren’t helicopters a major contributor to CO2 emissions according to the climate crowd? Why use a helicopter to hunt for alleged methane emissions then? Wouldn’t a drone be more environmentally friendly?

    jhkrischel in reply to George_Kaplan. | August 12, 2022 at 8:46 am

    My thought exactly. How the hell is the helicopter going to calibrate itself as it spews all kinds of hydrocarbons? Not to mention the propwash.