Commissioner Barry Smitherman addresses Israel's 1st International Oil & Gas Conference and Exhibition Dead Sea


AUSTIN– Commissioner Barry Smitherman today addressed Israel’s 1st International Oil and Gas Conference and Exhibition discussing the success of the Railroad Commission of Texas’ oil and gas regulation in helping to develop energy security for the United States.

In his video address Smitherman said, “As one of the largest producers of oil and natural gas, Texas is pleased to see additional countries, especially those that heretofore have been energy importers, begin the path toward energy security. A country with its own energy resources is in much greater control of its economy and its domestic and international security, and is better able to provide for its most vulnerable citizens.

“Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies are literally changing the global energy landscape,” Smitherman said. “You are experiencing that yourself off the coast of Israel, with the Leviathan field, in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Your citizens, and the companies which operate in Israel, will be much better off for it.

“Your country is poised to realize the dramatic positive effects of having your own large domestic supply of natural gas. Bountiful, inexpensive natural gas is a key component of a thriving economy with low energy prices for consumers and robust downstream industries that utilize natural gas as a feedstock,” Smitherman said.


Commissioner Barry Smitherman was appointed to the Railroad Commission of Texas in July 2011, and became Chairman in February 2012. In November 2012, Commissioner Smitherman won a statewide election to the Commission with 74 percent of the vote, receiving more than 4.5 million votes. His chairmanship ended in August, 2014, and his term on the Railroad Commission ends December 2014.  Commissioner Smitherman currently serves as Texas’ representative on the Southern States Energy Board, and as Chair of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ Gas Committee. He served two terms in the U.S. Department of Energy’s Electricity Advisory Committee, and was on the Public Utility Commission of Texas from April 2004 through July 2011, serving as Chairman for the last 42 months of his tenure.