Marcellus Shale Coalition urges lawmakers to oppose methane tax

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The Marcellus Shale Coalition, along with the Gas & Oil Association of West Virginia, and the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, is urging the congressional delegation from Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio to oppose a proposed methane emissions reduction tax that is included in the federal budget reconciliation bill currently being negotiated by Congress.

Of many issues, that bill would enact a blanket, basin-wide fee on all producers, regardless of production or methane emissions. That discourages individual companies from investing in technologies to reduce or eliminate emissions, the leaders from Appalachia’s shale gas industries said.

“Such a fee is simply an unreasonable, punitive tax intended to harm the oil and natural gas industry and consumers, as well as diminish the tremendous economic and environmental benefits derived from the hundreds of thousands of women and men who work directly and indirectly for the industry in the Appalachian Basin,” the coalition wrote in a Sept. 2 letter to lawmakers.

The coalition said it strives to make natural gas and oil production safer and more environmentally efficient every day, but this tax would hinder progress by resulting in higher energy costs and less capital investment that incentivizes innovation while providing little environmental benefit.

“We are proud of the advancements our industry has made in air quality and environmental stewardship, and we remain committed to further reducing emissions in the fastest, most efficient way possible. That said, this massive energy tax would place a harmful burden on American families and businesses, especially our manufacturing sector,” the letter stated. “Again, we urge you to oppose any such methane fee that would harm industry, consumers and workers alike.”