Paxton criticizes EPA over new rule that targets the oil and gas industry

SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is joining 23 other states in a comment-letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urging it to drop a new rule that they say directly targets the oil and gas industry with crippling regulations.

After a previous proposal from the EPA, the states claim the agency has now introduced a more radical supplemental proposal that goes even further to advance a harmful climate agenda and crush large portions of the American energy sector. The supplemental rule would crack down on oil and gas facilities with unprecedented and drastic emission guidelines.

The comment letter states: “All this will happen as Americans pay more money for essential goods and services. The last thing Americans need is increased energy costs as oil and gas companies comply with EPA’s standards. EPA cannot use flawed measures like the so-called ‘social cost of carbon’ to justify excessive costs that will have real consequences. All the more when the purported climate benefits, illusory as they are, could fall anywhere within a breathtakingly broad range—from $19 billion to $130 billion.”

To enforce the new rules, the EPA would cut out the states in certain instances and empower third-party interest groups to identify large methane emitters and notify them, which would require substantial actions by the owner receiving the notice.  

The compliance costs of the supplemental rule and its enforcement, which have the potential to bankrupt thousands of energy producers, would be in the billions. The rule’s costs would inevitably fall on the shoulders of the American people, all while being implemented in the name of achieving ambiguous and unreasonable emissions goals.

EPA’s decision to disregard the financial pain that Americans are currently feeling and its willingness to drive their energy costs up even higher in the future is disconcerting and wrong. The agency should reverse course and discard the supplemental proposed rule immediately.

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