Railroad Commissioners Push Back on Anti-Fossil Fuel Legislation Before Congress

June 08, 2023

RRC Chairman Christi Craddick, Commissioner Wayne Christian, and Commissioner Jim Wright each sent letters to Texas Senator John Cornyn and Commerce, Science & Transportation Ranking Member Senator Ted Cruz outlining concerns about S.576, the Railway Safety Act of 2023, and its specific impacts on the energy supply chain in America. They are concerned the legislation grants rulemaking authority to the U.S. Department of Transportation that could detrimentally limit the transport of fossil fuel-based energy products on freight cars.

“The current federal administration is doing everything it can to limit domestic energy production, and this bill is just the latest effort to shut down the oil and gas industry in America,” said Chairman Christi Craddick. “I urge members of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation, and members of Congress to implement guardrails in this legislation before it moves forward. Americans are already paying the price for failed energy policies coming from the federal government – we can’t afford to limit our access to clean, responsibly produced energy anymore.”

“Hijacking the railway safety reform bill is just the latest example of Washington Democrats and radical environmentalists utilizing every tool possible to put an end to fossil fuels and push their expensive and impractical ‘green’ agenda,” said Commissioner Wayne Christian. “We cannot allow the Biden Administration to succeed in their efforts. There are better ways to improve railroad safety than targeting the transportation of coal, oil, and natural gas which will only increase energy costs for all Americans."

“American energy independence is only as good as our nation’s ability to move and transport our products to market,” said Commissioner Jim Wright. “Unfortunately, this administration has proven itself time and again to be beholden to the radical left who seek to end our domestic oil and gas industry by targeting the transportation of these products, first by pipelines, now by railways. Improving railway safety and ensuring adequate transportation options for U.S. domestic energy production are not mutually exclusive goals. I ask that members of the Senate take additional action to ensure our energy supply chain is not held hostage by those more concerned with appeasing the environmental movement than protecting public safety.”


Copies of each of the Commissioner’s letters to the Committee can be found here:


Letter from Chairman Craddick


Letter from Commissioner Christian


Letter from Commissioner Wright


About the Railroad Commission:
Our mission is to serve Texas by our stewardship of natural resources and the environment, our concern for personal and community safety, and our support of enhanced development and economic vitality for the benefit of Texans. The Commission has a long and proud history of service to both Texas and to the nation, including almost 100 years regulating the oil and gas industry. The Commission also has jurisdiction over alternative fuels safety, natural gas utilities, surface mining and intrastate pipelines. Established in 1891, the Railroad Commission of Texas is the oldest regulatory agency in the state. To learn more, please visit https://www.rrc.texas.gov/about-us/.