Environmental Defense Fund

Obama-era clean-air rule on methane emissions blocked again

An on-again, off-again effort to restrict harmful methane emissions on federal lands is off — again.

A federal judge in Wyoming has halted the clean-air rule indefinitely, saying it "makes little sense" to force oil and gas companies to comply with the Obama-era rule when the Trump administration has moved to roll back the 2016 regulation.

The Interior Department is accepting comments on its proposed rewrite and expects to issue a final rule this summer.

In the meantime, Judge Scott Skavdahl said enforcing the earlier rule would provide "minimal public benefit" while imposing potentially significant costs on industry.

"Sadly, and...