Washington, D.C. – Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) today released the following statement in response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) release of its final rule directly limiting emissions of methane from new sources.

Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas): “EPA's new methane regulation is just the first step toward an expansive agency agenda to further regulate the oil and gas sector. No industrial sector has done more to drastically reduce methane emissions through voluntary and other measures.  This rule is a desperate attempt to shift attention from the fact that the cornerstone of the administration’s Climate Action Plan will fail to meet the promised targets recently signed at the United Nations.

“EPA continues to impose its ‘command and control’ mentality to impose strict rules on industrial sectors it does not like, disregarding the great strides that industry has made to reduce emissions on its own. The EPA has become a rogue agency trying to implement costly and unnecessary regulations.”

EPA’s rule will require the oil and gas industry to modify its equipment and procedures. This is the first time EPA has directly regulated methane from such sources. The rule represents a first step towards further regulating an industry that has already voluntarily taken measures to dramatically reduce methane emissions.

In 2015, the Obama administration finalized some of the most broad environmental regulations in the history of the United States – the Waters of the United States, the Clean Power Plan, and Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards. In the final year of this administration, EPA is undertaking a burdensome regulatory agenda on the American people, an agenda that is intended to limit specific industry sectors and is not based on sound science.