Obama Administration Issues Rules on Methane From Oil, Gas Operations

By Amy Harder, The Wall Street Journal. 

WASHINGTON—The Interior Department issued regulations Tuesday to cut methane emissions from oil and natural-gas operations on federal lands, one of the last moves President Barack Obama will make on his expansive climate agenda, which President-elect Donald Trump has vowed to dismantle.

The rules are aimed at helping meet an Obama administration goal of cutting the oil-and-gas industry’s emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, by as much as 45% from 2012 levels over the next decade.

The U.S. government is unlikely to meet that goal because Mr. Trump has been clear that he intends to reverse Mr. Obama’s climate agenda and withdraw rules that could restrict oil and natural-gas development. However, the president-elect hasn’t explicitly said he would undo this methane rule or another similar one at the Environmental Protection Agency.

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