Twenty AGs Opposed a Motion to Stay EPA’s Rule to Limit Methane from Oil and Gas Sector

On June 11, California Attorney General Rob Bonta led a coalition of 20 attorneys general in opposing a motion to stay the Environmental Protection Agency’s rule that set limits on methane and other smog-producing emissions from new and existing oil and gas facilities. The rule was challenged by a group of industry associations, who requested a stay of the rule. In their motion, the AGs described this as an “extraordinary remedy” that the industry movant-petitioners failed to show was necessary. The AGs explained that EPA has “broad discretion to balance economic, environmental, and energy considerations in choosing an achievable emission level,” and so the petitioners’ claims that EPA failed to meet requirements set by Section 111 of the Clean Air Act were false. The AGs argued that denying a stay would not cause irreparable harm, while granting a stay would cause significant climate change and public health harms by delaying emission reductions. The AGs urged the court to deny the motion to stay. On July 9, the D.C. Circuit denied the motion for stay.