Natural Gas, Electronics Groups Sue EPA


"New federal regulations require companies to disclose greenhouse gas emissions."

New federal regulations that require companies to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions have drawn several new lawsuits from electronics companies and the natural gas industry, which argue that there are flaws in the way U.S. EPA designed the program.

Trade groups such as the American Gas Association and the Semiconductor Industry Association, as well as the manufacturing giant 3M Co. and natural gas producer Chesapeake Energy Corp., want the agency to rethink various elements of the reporting rules that were finalized at the beginning of December. In total, seven groups filed petitions in federal court before yesterday's deadline for legal challenges.

The requirements, ordered by Congress to help policymakers and the public understand where the nation's greenhouse gas emissions originate, are separate from the controversial EPA regulations that are meant to curb greenhouse gases from cars, light-duty trucks and industrial facilities. But the newest spate of petitions, filed Friday and Monday, shows there are still some lingering disagreements about the best way to get a handle on the nation's emissions inventory.

Oil and gas groups are challenging the new requirements for drilling, production and processing facilities, while electronics groups want EPA to rethink the rules for users of fluorinated greenhouse gases.

Most other industries are required to submit their first reports to EPA in less than two months, but the rules for these two sectors were delayed for a year after the agency decided it needed more time to craft the requirements.

Most of API's petitions say EPA hasn't given companies enough time to decide whether they will need to request the use of "best available monitoring methods" as a substitute for the methods that were otherwise ordered by the agency.

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