Hot air: Biden rolls out his plan to regulate methane, which could impact Alaska


President Joe Biden has announced at the United Nations climate change summit in Glasgow, Scotland that he will use his powers to regulate methane that comes from oil and natural gas development.

Biden said he will direct the Environmental Protection Agency to limit the methane coming from all existing oil and gas rigs in the U.S., reversing the relaxed regulations of the Trump Administration. Biden will also seek to end the exemptions for legacy oil fields.

For Alaska, it’s an unknown. Because Alaska has the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, which seeks to maximize conservation, Alaska has not been a big emitter of methane. In fact, oil fields in Alaska re-inject natural gas into the oil fields to force out more oil, rather than flaring it, as is done in other states. The commission ensures that field operators prevent waste, protect correlative rights, improve ultimate recovery and protect underground freshwater. The Commission also administers the Underground Injection Control program for enhanced oil recovery and underground disposal of oil field waste in Alaska.

The announcement by Biden could put a chill on oil development in places like North Dakota and the Permian Basin.

Hilcorp, which operates much of the North Slope since British Petroleum exited the state, is one of the larger emitters of methane in the nation, primarily because it takes over aging fields in Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Louisiana, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wyoming and improves them. Part of that improvement is making them more efficient, which includes repairing things like leaks. The Houston-based company doesn’t get credit for improving old fields so they lose less methane, but will probably find the new regulations punishing.

The 100 nations attending the United Nations climate change summit have vowed to cut global emissions of methane by 30 percent over the next eight years, a goal that is hard to imagine.

Biden said his new mandate will create jobs in the methane-detection field, as well as jobs capping abandoned oil wells and fixing leaks.

Although the announcement came as a surprise to some, it was not a surprise to oil producers. The president, immediately after taking office in January, directed federal agencies to prepare these regulations in advance of the expected United Nations summit, where some of the richest people on the planet flew in private jets to determine how the earth’s poorest people will be prevented from improving their lives.


  1. Wonder how much FLIR corporation spent Lobbying the Whitehouse and legislature for this? (They build the only “Gascam” in the wold don’t they?)

  2. Not to worry, Russia is very environmentally responsible in their production. And it is just a few hours away to work. Remember when Reeve Aleutian chartered to Russian field? Don’t worry! Ole Joe is really looking out for us (hmm, is that Joe Biden or Joe Stalin? It will take some thought).

  3. Will this ‘regulation’ start putting methane in our food as they did with the flouride waste going into our water?
    Remember folks, it was the federal government who regulated gas cans to be MORE leaky than they were before. For the environment.

    US Government has lost the plot and if people still choose to follow them, well there is no hope for the sheep.

  4. Biden needs to regulate himself first. He’s the source of all this climate change propaganda emitting from his hit air mouth.

  5. The “M, S, & Y” (ie: Alaska’s very own Dog & Pony Show) … Are you still proud of that vote in favor of Haaland and Stone-Manning? I bet you you’re having buyers remorse now. What exactly did you personally get out of that backroom deal? As for us Oilfield Trash, we’ll get thrown in the ditch as we watch our industry get fleeced by the Bureaucrats. As a result, we’ll see our work and business opportunities disappear.
    Thanks for Nothing!!!

  6. Next he’s going to mandate bovine-sized daily doses of Bean-0 for all our cows… He’s just going to let all the bulls be full of it. And the real Xi is laughing his his head off.

  7. Alaska needs smart leadership to overcome the attacks by the oil-hating left, who in power in Alaska has the wisdom to lead a change of the broken oil and gas tax laws and costly and lengthy regulatory system that runs oil and gas investment out of the state. I pray for the Governor and his staff and the Legilstors so Alaskans can have the prosperity they deserve! God Bless Alaska oil and gas workers!

  8. Boy it’s a good thing Princess Lisa voted to seat Deb Haaland for Interior. You know, Biden’s rabid anti-development indigenous female nominee.
    I’m sure Haaland is fighting tooth and nail for Alaska’s right to develop her own resources. Right? Right? Anyone? Lisa? Are you there????

  9. Did he decide this while he was taking a snooze during the conference? Or was it when he missed the “bathroom break”? This was a foregone conclusion and another big old raspberry to making American citizens another (unwilling) global partner to make us dependent on foreign powers to provide when we have a abundance of it in our own country.

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