July 23, 2021 | Law360 | 1 minute read

On June 30, President Joe Biden signed into law a resolution under the Congressional Review Act, or CRA, that disapproved a final rule adopted by the prior administration making significant changes to Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 60, Subpart OOOOa, commonly known as the Methane Rule.

The previous administration’s final rule changed the federal New Source Performance Standards, or NSPS, applying to sources in the oil and natural gas sector.

The CRA resolution rightfully received a great deal of attention, because it reinstitutes the regulation of methane under the NSPS — an important precedent for the US Environmental Protection Agency in regulating methane from existing oil and gas sources.

And while the CRA resolution set the table for the EPA’s future regulation of methane emissions from existing oil and gas sources, it also had a more immediate impact: Sources in the transportation and storage segment of the industry — which had been dropped from coverage under the oil and gas NSPS by the prior administration — are once again subject to oil and gas NSPS requirements, effective immediately.

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