SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH – Attorney General Sean D. Reyes joined a coalition of States, led by Louisiana, in sending a letter to the Deputy Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) over its Proposed Rule, Pipeline Safety: Gas Pipeline Leak Detection and Repair. The Attorneys General request that the Proposed Rule be withdrawn.
The proposed rule is part of the Biden administration’s ongoing scheme to eliminate methane emissions from new and existing gas pipelines and facilities. PHMSA claims to derive authority for the rule from a 2020 law directing the agency to prioritize the “assignment and maintenance of safety” in regulating natural gas pipelines. However, the pending regulation turns congressional intent on its head. As the attorneys general write in their letter, PHMSA’s statutory authority is “premised on Congress’s determination that pipelines are necessary and desirable, and that any regulation of those pipelines must satisfy strict statutory constraints.”
In their letter, the States argue that PHMSA’s understanding of the 2020 law is “flawed” and that “PHMSA failed to apply the statutory requirements for it to regulate.” These requirements include conducting a cost-benefit analysis and considering the cumulative costs of the rule.
Joining Utah and Louisiana on the letter were the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.