Are you breathing oil and gas pollution?

[Photos by Pete Dronkers, Earthworks — Composite by Ema Thornton]

The Methane and Waste Prevention Rule is in the news again this week. The rule went into effect during the Obama Administration in January 2017, with the compliance deadline set for January 2018.

On Wednesday, the Federal District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that the Interior Department (BLM) cannot use a provision in the Administrative Procedure Act to delay compliance of the rule on methane emissions on federal lands. However earlier that same day, apparently in anticipation of the court ruling, the BLM filed for a temporary suspension of compliance until January 2019, citing high costs of compliance to industry operators, as well as several other mineral leasing acts.

Western Organization of Resource Councils (WORC) board member Lisa DeVille is directly affected by harmful and wasteful methane emissions on the Fort Berthold Reservation in North Dakota. She said the West benefits from the standard through less emission of harmful methane gas and increased royalty revenues collected on captured gas. In a statement on Wednesday, DeVille said:

“The West deserves better than this! Today’s one year rule delay of the BLM Methane Waste Prevention Rule is not only disappointing, it also shows that Secretary Zinke and the Trump Administration are more concerned with catering to the oil and gas industry than curbing wasteful methane emissions from oil and gas wells on federal leases. WORC and its groups throughout the West will continue to fight all efforts by Secretary Zinke and the Trump Administration to roll back the much needed protections provided by the BLM Methane Waste Prevention Rule.”

Send your comments on this proposed rule to the BLM on or before November 6, 2017. Click here for instructions.

Are you breathing oil and gas pollution?

The Oil & Gas Threat Map was created to raise public awareness of the dangers of methane emissions from oil & gas operations, which also contain fugitive emissions including benzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, xylene, styrene, and other toxic chemicals.

The Oil & Gas Threat Map features include:

  • Individual state maps that plot locations of all active oil & gas wells in the U.S. (except North Carolina & Idaho)
  • Counts people, schools, and hospitals that live within ½ mile of O&G facilities
  • National, state, and county data showing the contribution of oil and gas air pollution to elevated ozone smog levels, along with consequent asthma and other respiratory impacts
  • EPA data & models show which counties have health risks because of oil & gas toxic air pollution.

The latest Oil & Gas Threat Map update allows you to click on your location on the map, and then your home or school to find out if you’re at elevated risk for exposure to pollution caused by oil & gas operations

Now you can:

  • Find out more about oil & gas operations in your area
  • View infrared videos of normally invisible pollution from oil and gas operations
  • Watch interviews with local people who are impacted by oil & gas pollution

The Oil & Gas Threat Map is brought to you by Earthworks, Clean Air Task Force, and FracTracker Alliance.


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