American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 16

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IndustryDigest
its guidance documents.
Additional information on the
proposed rule can be found at
www.epa.gov/lawsregulations/proposed-rulemaking-epaguidance-administrative-proceduresissuance-and-public. ❒

Executive Order Invokes
Emergency Powers
To Speed Infrastructure
WASHINGTON-Citing the dramatic
economic downturn resulting from the
coronavirus pandemic and resulting
mitigation measures, President Donald
Trump on June 4 issued an executive
order aimed at speeding infrastructure
project permitting.
The EO, "Accelerating the Nation's
Economic Recovery From the COVID19 Emergency By Expediting
Infrastructure Investments and Other
Activities," invokes presidential powers
to institute emergency permitting
procedures for infrastructure projects
that are in the process of review
according to requirements of the
Endangered Species Act, National
Environmental Policy Act, Clean Water
Act Section 404 water quality permits
and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Nationwide 12 permit program.
"From the beginning of my
administration, I have focused on
reforming and streamlining an outdated
regulatory system that has held back our
economy with needless paperwork and
costly delays," the EO states.
"Antiquated regulations and bureaucratic
practices have hindered American
infrastructure investments, kept
America's building trades workers from
working, and prevented our citizens from
developing and enjoying the benefits of
world-class infrastructure."
Under the EO, federal agencies
including the Environmental Protection
Agency and departments of the Interior,
Agriculture, Transportation and Defense
have 30 days to identify projects that
"may be subject to emergency
treatment" under the Nationwide Permit
program, and are required to provide
status reports on their progress every 30
days thereafter for the duration of the
emergency. Agencies "are directed to
use, to the fullest extent possible and
consistent with applicable law, the
16 THE AMERICAN OIL & GAS REPORTER

emergency Army Corps permitting
provisions, to facilitate the nation's
economic recovery."
The Energy Equipment &
Infrastructure Alliance says this EO has
implications for otherwise stymied
pipeline projects (see related story, page
20). "This is significant, given the
invalidation of Army Corps Nationwide
12 permits by the Montana District
Court judge," the group reports. "If the
intent of the order can be carried out, we
would expect that projects relying on
Nationwide 12 water crossing permits
that were threatened by the Montana
court order may be back on track."
Media accounts note antidevelopment groups and Democrats
have criticized the move, and some,
EEIA notes, have vowed to challenge it
in court. ❒

DOE Tests SPR's Ability
To Deliver Physical Oil
WASHINGTON-The U.S.
Department of Energy is testing the
physical crude oil available for the
nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve
through a test purchase from small and
midsize U.S. oil producers.
The agency conducted a solicitation
in May to purchase as much as 1
million barrels of sweet crude oil for
July, with early deliveries accepted in
June to one or more of three SPR sites-
Big Hill or Bryan Mound in Texas, or
Bayou Choctaw in Louisiana, based on
bidder preference and scheduling
logistics.
DOE says the crude oil purchase
tests the current conditions of physical
crude oil available to the SPR, as
opposed to the financial market trading
West Texas Intermediate futures
contracts on the New York Mercantile
Exchange. The department adds this
purchase complements deliveries of
crude scheduled for June or July under
its crude oil storage initiative, which
launched in April.
The purchase follows DOE's
negotiating contracts with nine U.S.
producers allowing them to store as
much as 23 million barrels of their
domestically produced crude in the
SPR. The agency says awardees can
schedule return of their oil through
March 2021, minus a small amount of
oil to cover SPR's cost of storage.
Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette

says making the storage capacity
available will help alleviate some of the
stress on the U.S. energy industry,
which is faced with concerns about
storage availability. ❒

Interior, BOEM Update
Air Quality Standards
For Gulf, North Slope
WASHINGTON-The U.S.
Department of the Interior and Bureau
of Ocean Energy Management have
published a final rule updating air
quality regulations for applicable
BOEM activities in the Central and
Western Gulf of Mexico and off the
coast of Alaska's North Slope Borough.
The agencies say the new rule
doesn't relax any standards for
regulating air quality, uses the best
available science, and makes important
technical and compliance-related
updates to bring the regulation into this
century.
The final rule includes:
· Adding a definition of the
National Ambient Air Quality Standards
(NAAQS) and clarifying that Interior's
reporting and compliance requirements
apply to all pollutant emissions on the
Outer Continental Shelf for which a
NAAQS has been defined.
· Replacing the table of
significance levels (SLs) in BOEM's
regulations that date back to 1980 with
a revised table that is based on values
set forth in regulations issued by the
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
BOEM will update the table as
appropriate, which it says will save
operators from having to search for the
SLs in EPA's regulations.
· Replacing the former criteria air
pollutant "total suspended particulates"
modeling requirements with new
requirements for the criteria pollutants
"particulate matter 10" and "particulate
matter 2.5" standards. BOEM also is
updating its forms to enable lessees and
operators to identify, report and evaluate
PM10 and PM2.5 pollution in the air
quality spreadsheets they submit in
connection with exploration or
development plans.
· Updating regulations governing
emissions exemption thresholds to
clarify that these formulae apply equally
to development and production plans
(DPPs) as well as development


http://www.epa.gov/laws-regulations/proposed-rulemaking-epa-guidance-administrative-procedures-issuance-and-public http://www.epa.gov/laws-regulations/proposed-rulemaking-epa-guidance-administrative-procedures-issuance-and-public http://www.epa.gov/laws-regulations/proposed-rulemaking-epa-guidance-administrative-procedures-issuance-and-public http://www.epa.gov/laws-regulations/proposed-rulemaking-epa-guidance-administrative-procedures-issuance-and-public

American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020

Contents
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - Intro
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 1
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 2
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - Contents
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 4
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 5
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 6
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 7
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 8
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 9
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American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 16
American Oil and Gas Reporter - June 2020 - 17
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