EPA backs off pollution crackdown in the Permian Basin

A flare goes off from a smokestack between two drilling rigs on a small hill in a West Texas oil field.


The recent giant sigh of relief heard throughout the Permian Basin might have come from Oklahoma energy firms and many others drilling in the nation’s largest shale basin.

They feared the EPA would address high air pollution levels from the oil fields that make up the basin in West Texas and Southeast New Mexico. But the agency backed off the proposal that was revealed last summer to require substantial reforms in the oil and gas operations.

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