The federal government should not tell states how to regulate natural gas operations within their borders, the American Petroleum Institute (API) told a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) panel in formal remarks on the panel's preliminary findings.
"While the industry and states are constantly striving to improve operations, it is important to recognize the strong foundation for shale gas operations that currently exists through robust state regulatory programs in most parts of the country," API said. "Rather than deferring on the proper role of state governments, we recommend the Subcommittee acknowledge the success that has been demonstrated through state-level programs. Regulation of oil and natural gas has been led by states since the inception of the industry and has demonstrated a high degree of capability and flexibility in adapting to changes such as those seen with unconventional gas development. States have created systems that effectively protected the environment, including ground water and drinking water sources."
Other remarks by the industry group included:
Among other things, API also protested the DOE panel's proposal to regulate air quality emissions from fracking operations separately. "Shale gas operations are already subject to a myriad of federal (Clean Air Act) and state air emissions regulations that have been in place for many years and continue to evolve," API said. "States must often obtain primacy by having programs as or more stringent than the federal requirements in meeting human health and environmental goals."
API supported the panel's recognition that shale gas provides important energy and economic contributions to the U.S.
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