DEQ to increase compliance checks of engines at oil and gas production sites

Beginning this spring, the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Air Quality Division (AQD) will again be conducting increased compliance checks on engines at oil and gas production facilities across the state.

According to Steve Dietrich, AQD Administrator, the department has regular compliance and permitting requirements for these facilities, however these increased checks go above and beyond.

This rig was drilling for oil northeast of Edgerton in the Powder River Basin. (Dustin Bleizeffer/WyoFile — click to enlarge)
This rig was drilling for oil northeast of Edgerton in the Powder River Basin. (Dustin Bleizeffer/WyoFile — click to enlarge)

“These engines at the facilities already have state air permitting requirements and must meet federal standards when built,” said Dietrich. “However, these additional checks using a portable analyzer, test the operations of these engines in the real world environment, including the effects of weather conditions, elevation, and loading.”

Since 2011, DEQ has been conducting these additional checks statewide.

“These efforts have been well received by the industry and we have seen an increase in performance and compliance of the engines,” added Dietrich.

The next steps to further these efforts could include a more formal testing regime that follows U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reference methods for recurring problem areas as well as development of training opportunities for operators.

Dustin Bleizeffer is a Report for America Corps member covering energy and climate at WyoFile. He has worked as a coal miner, an oilfield mechanic, and for 25 years as a statewide reporter and editor primarily...

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