Sierra Club: EPA Releases Voluntary Guidelines for Oil and Gas Operations

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Washington, DC –(ENEWSPF)–October 21, 2016.  Yesterday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued voluntary guidelines for oil and gas operations.

In response, Sierra Club Staff Attorney Andres Restrepo released the following statement:

“We commend the EPA for finalizing its Control Techniques Guidelines for oil and gas operations. These guidelines will help curb dangerous ozone pollution—the primary component of smog—in some of our most vulnerable communities, helping prevent illnesses such as asthma attacks, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, heart attacks, and strokes. We now call on states in smog-heavy areas to incorporate EPA’s guidelines into their plans to bring smog down to legally permissible levels.

Furthermore, we are encouraged that EPA did not include in the final guidelines a proposed loophole that would have excluded most oil- and gas-producing wells from coverage. The EPA has decided instead to study these sources more closely, and we urge the agency to finalize guidelines for all wells as soon as possible.

“More importantly, while these guidelines are a step in the right direction. The EPA must now take swift and decisive action to limit dangerous pollution—include methane, air toxins, and organic compounds—from all existing sources in the oil and gas industry, regardless of location.”