ODESSA, Texas — The Environmental Protection Agency is attempting to use air quality measurements in New Mexico to potentially reclassify the Texas portion of the Permian Basin as a non-attainment area due to ozone air pollution issues.
Some people say that if this proposal is finalized, the oil and gas industry in West Texas would be halted, subsequently causing millions of jobs to be lost in Texas, as well as billions of dollars of revenue that fuels our economy — both in Texas and in the United States.
“You know, whether we be Democrat, Republican, Independent, we can all come together to support American oil and gas production, because it is the booming economy that benefits all Americans,” President and Founder of Oil & Gas Workers Association Matt Coday said.
According to State Representative Brooks Landgraf, the EPA has no legitimate data to support its attempt, which would actually harm the environment more by forcing foreign countries with lower environmental standards than Texas to produce more oil and gas.
Landgraf also believes that the EPA is targeting the oil and gas industry, but that it does not fully understand the implications of its actions.
“I don’t think that they understand what the implications are for the number of jobs that would be lost, the families whose livelihoods would be destroyed, the amount of money that would be taken away from public schools all across Texas, or our state universities that rely on the revenue that’s generated from oil and gas production,” Landgraf said.
Landgraf sees this as an all-hands-on-deck type of battle to defend oil and gas production in the Permian Basin.
“If you pick a fight with the Permian Basin, we’re going to fight back,” Landgraf said.