Bridger Photonics and Methane Emission Regulations
Energy industry regulations can be complex, they change rapidly, and they vary by location. At Bridger Photonics, we track changes in methane regulations and how they apply to advanced methane detection technologies used by oil and gas operators. Read below for more information and links to the pertinent regulation resources.
Currently, Gas Mapping LiDAR™ (GML) is deployed widely across the U.S and Canada. Federal, state, or provincial regulations, as well as other local regulations, may all be applicable to your sites.* The following resources cover regulations that GML is currently used to comply with, in addition to upcoming regulations that we anticipate GML will be used for.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) oversees a range of environmental regulations including emissions performance standards for certain oil and gas infrastructure as well as greenhouse gas reporting requirements. Key EPA methane regulations for oil and gas include the mandatory greenhouse gas reporting program (GHGRP, 40 CFR Part 98 Subpart W), and performance standards in 40 CFR Part 60.
EPA NSPS OOOOb and OOOOc
On November 30th 2023, the EPA administrator signed a rule that establishes new performance standards to reduce methane and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from the oil and gas sector.
There were two subsections for this rule:
- Emissions performance standards for new, modified, or reconstructed equipment (proposed 40 CFR Part 60 Subpart NSPS OOOOb).
- Emissions regulation guidelines for existing infrastructure (proposed 40 CFR Part 60 Subpart EG OOOOc; meant to be addressed primarily by state implementation plans).
Learn about using GML for OOOOb and OOOOc regulatory compliance here:
EPA Subpart W
In August of 2023, the EPA proposed revisions to subpart W of the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (40 CFR 98). The proposed amendments incorporate calculation methodologies and reporting requirements of additional emissions or emission sources, including "Other large release events" revisions to add to new or revise existing calculation methodologies, revisions to existing reporting requirements, and more.
Check out our EPA timeline to keep track of what's coming in 2023 and beyond.
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) that regulates oil and gas pipelines in the United States to ensure the safe transportation of energy resources. PHMSA has established emission regulations for leak detection in natural gas pipelines to minimize gas releases and ensure the safe operation of pipelines. These methane regulations require operators to conduct leak surveys and repair identified leaks promptly.
In May 2023, PHMSA released a proposed rule to “significantly improve the detection and repair of leaks from gas pipelines.” Utilization of advanced leak detection technologies is a required component of this new rule.
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) oversees the securities industry and financial markets. The agency proposed a rule in 2022 aiming to enhance and standardize climate-related disclosures for investors. The proposed rule would require public companies to disclose their climate-related risks and opportunities, including their methane emissions, as well as other factors. The proposed rule seeks to provide investors with more complete information to make informed investment decisions and facilitate the transition to a low-carbon economy.
Environment and Climate Change Canada
Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) is the Canadian federal regulatory agency that oversees rules related to the environment and natural resources. ECCC recently proposed a regulatory framework for reducing oil and gas methane emissions to achieve the nation’s 2030 emissions reduction target of 75% reduction relative to 2012, including stringent numerical emission performance requirements for most methane emission sources. For many federal regulations, there are equivalency agreements in place with provincial energy regulators.
Alberta Energy Regulator’s Alt-FEMP Program
The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) is the regulatory agency for the Canadian province of Alberta that oversees the development and management of energy activities in the province. Its directives currently require operators to scan for fugitive methane emissions three times per year using optical gas imaging (OGI) or organic vapor analyzers (OVAs). However, the AER also oversees an Alternative Fugitive Emission Management Program (Alt-FEMP) that allows operators to use advanced methane-detecting technology instead of the default OGI or OVA approaches.
Use Gas Mapping LiDAR for Methane Regulation Compliance
To learn more about how Gas Mapping LiDAR can help your company meet state, provincial, or federal methane emission regulations, reach out now.