Lynn Helms Urges Lawmakers Over Proposed Regulations

Top North Dakota official urged lawmakers to reign in proposed clean air regulations.

Related: Methane Emissions Drop

Lynn Helms, the director of the N.D. Department of Mineral Resources, spoke to a U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee last week lending his voice to the growing opposition to the proposed regulations by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Helms and others claim that the states are making great strides in regulating oil and gas activity in their states and that the EPA has no right to such overreach. He testified that the new plan will hurt the region's oil and gas production. 

(The EPA’s plan) will nullify the proven state regulatory program and thereby harm the State’s sovereign interest in planning and developing the use of oil and gas resources within its jurisdiction. The record keeping requirements of the proposed rule are far too voluminous for any kind of reasonable inspection and enforcement to be conducted.
— Lynn Helms

Last summer, President Obama revealed a plan designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions 40 – 45 percent by 2025. After almost a year, the EPA finalized the new rule in May setting tougher standards for methane leaks along the natural gas production line.

The new standards are stronger than those proposed last summer and look to reduce 520,000 short tons of methane in 2025 instead of 400,000 in the original proposal. This is equivalent of 11 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.

Read Helms' full testimony here