Senate blocks moves to overturn Obama-era rule on drilling

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has blocked an effort to overturn an Obama-era regulation restricting harmful methane emissions that escape from oil and gas wells on federal land.

The measure failed on a vote of 51-to-49 in the Republican-led chamber.

Republican leaders were seeking to overturn the Interior Department rule under the Congressional Review Act.

President Barack Obama finalized a rule in November that would force energy companies to capture methane that’s burned off or “flared” at drilling sites because it earns less money than oil.

Democrats and environmental groups say the rule protects the public health and generates millions in revenue for state, local and tribal governments.

Republicans and industry groups call the rule an example of federal overreach under Obama and say it duplicates state rules in place throughout the West. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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