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API: BOEM air quality monitoring proposal continues pattern of agency overreach without scientific support


Reid Porter | porterr@api.org | 202.682.8114


WASHINGTON, March 17, 2016 – API Group Director of Upstream and Industry Operations Erik Milito said that the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM) proposal to regulate air quality in the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) is the latest example of an agency advancing regulation outside of its authority. The agency’s own conclusions contradict the proposal, showing that offshore operations don’t significantly impact onshore air quality.

“BOEM air modeling studies are not expected to be completed until 2017 and were commissioned to inform the rule. The agency should not get ahead of the science and proceed with a rule proposal without the necessary data to justify costly regulatory changes.

“The agency is mandated to regulate OCS emissions only if the activities have significant effects on onshore air quality. Based on the agency’s own studies, that simply isn’t the case. This is regulation for regulation’s sake.

“The suggested regulatory changes could significantly affect operations, and a robust cost impact analysis is necessary. This is yet another agency piling on new regulations that could hinder domestic energy production and add untold costs to industry operations.”

In a February 10 letter to Director Hopper, API called on BOEM to not fundamentally alter the current Air Quality Regulatory Program. The agency and neighboring states have repeatedly concluded that offshore emission sources do not contribute significantly to onshore air quality.

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 650 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 30 million Americans.