PBPA Comments on the proposed revisions to the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP)
October 2, 2023
Re: Comments on EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule: Revisions and Confidentiality Determinations for Petroleum and Natural Gas Systems at 88 Fed. Reg. 50282 (August 1, 2023) (the “Proposed Rule” or “GHGRP”)
Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OAR–2023–0234; FRL–10246–01–OAR
Submitted via e-filing
Dear Administrator Regan:
The Permian Basin Petroleum Association (“PBPA”) is the largest regional oil and gas association in the United States. We represent the men and women who work in the oil and gas industry in the Permian Basin of West Texas and southeastern New Mexico. The Permian Basin is the largest inland oil and gas reservoir and the largest oil and gas producing region in the world. PBPA consists of the largest producers as well as the smallest operators in the Permian Basin. Part of PBPA’s mission is to promote environmentally conscious operations and sustainable economic profitability among all our members, large and small. Because PBPA’s members will be directly impacted by these proposed revisions, if finalized, we are submitting these comments to convey needed revisions.
Before discussing the specific major technical and policy flaws in the proposed rule, it is critical to provide context for its existence and likely impact broadly. First and most important, the proposed rule, in conjunction with efforts to incorporate elements of the the-not-yet-final New Source Performance Standards (“NSPS”) and Emissions Guidelines for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Existing Crude Oil and Natural Gas Facilities (“EG”) OOOOb/c pending rule, will dramatically increase the scope and breadth of activities and oil and gas operators that will be subjected to methane emissions reporting requirements. As a result, the intended effect will be to dramatically increase those operations subject to the charge for emissions above 25,000 metric tons of CO2 or its equivalent as established in the Inflation Reduction Act (“IRA”).
Utilization of the rulemaking process in this manner is not consistent with the IRA. In fact, the author of the methane charge legislation, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), the Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, has made clear that his intention is that only those operations that were subject to Subpart W on the date of enactment are to be subject to the charge. He was particularly concerned about the impact on small to medium producers. In his June 6, 2023, letter to the...