Skip to content

World’s Biggest Oil Field Faces Pollution Rules That Could Curb Drilling

  • EPA considering ozone violation designation for Permian Basin
  • Move could trigger tougher scrutiny of new drilling operations

The Biden administration is considering triggering tougher anti-smog requirements that could curb drilling across parts of the Permian Basin, the world’s biggest oil field that straddles Texas and New Mexico.

The Environmental Protection Agency is weighing labeling parts of the Permian Basin as violating federal air quality standards for ozone -- a designation that would force state regulators to develop plans for cracking down on that smog-forming pollution. The move, outlined in a regulatory notice, could spur new permitting requirements and scrutiny of drilling operations.