Wyoming Moves to Slash Oil and Gas Emissions

EDF statement from Jon Goldstein, Director of Regulatory and Legislative Affairs, Energy

December 27, 2018
Kelsey Robinson, (512) 691-3404, krobinson@edf.org

(CHEYENNE, WY) The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality finalized new standards today to reduce harmful emissions from the state's new and modified oil and gas facilities. The move from the Mead Administration is an important step toward comprehensive statewide emissions reduction rules, and comes in the wake of federal attempts to weaken our nation's pollution standards for new and modified wells.

Oil and gas companies across the state will be required to check new facilities regularly for leaks that create smog and waste valuable natural gas, depriving the state and local communities of significant royalty and tax revenue. The statewide standards build upon successful requirements implemented by the state in the Upper Green River Basin (UGRB) of Western Wyoming in 2015. A recent poll indicates two-thirds of Wyoming voters support the statewide extension of rules that prevent natural gas waste.

While the overwhelming majority of new drilling in Wyoming is occurring outside the UGRB – and will be subject to these new standards – this move will still leave the majority of Wyoming's existing oil and gas wells (75 percent) unaddressed.

"This action is the latest example of how Governor Mead has positioned Wyoming as an energy leader. These are commonsense standards supported by oil and gas companies because they include proven, affordable ways to reduce pollution and stop energy waste.

"EDF stands ready to work with the incoming administration and other Wyoming leaders to develop the strongest standards possible, including reducing emissions from the thousands of existing well sites across Wyoming."

  • Jon Goldstein, Director of Regulatory and Legislative Affairs, Energy

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