Craddick: Expanding Offshore Energy Exploration Critical to Texas, U.S. Energy SecurityAugust 17, 2017
AUSTIN – Railroad Commission Chairman Christi Craddick today urged the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) to include all 26 Outer Continental Shelf planning areas in the development of a new five-year National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program (National OCS Program) for 2019-2024.
“U.S. federal waters contain approximately 148 billion barrels of oil equivalent in undiscovered resources, which is enough energy to meet the nation’s oil and natural gas needs for more than a decade,” Craddick said in a letter to BOEM.
“By expanding access in the Gulf of Mexico, Texas and the Gulf States will continue to supply Americans with reliable, U.S. crude oil, petroleum products and natural gas. This means Texas businesses and families spend less on energy and more on goods, services, and investments that are vital to maintaining and enhancing our economy and standard of living.
“In FY 2014, offshore oil and gas activity in the Gulf of Mexico generated over $64 billion in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and over 650,000 jobs, including 193,000 jobs and over $20 billion in GDP for Texas, greatly benefitting the Texas economy,” Craddick said.
Quest Offshore Resources, estimates an increase in Gulf of Mexico offshore oil and gas activity could support more than 62,000 jobs and over $5 billion in annual GDP for Texas alone.
“One of the great benefits of the shale revolution has been our ability to reduce our reliance on foreign sources of energy, enabling us to export our vast resources to allies overseas,” Craddick said. “Indeed, energy policy is foreign policy, and expanded access to American energy is good for American interests.”
Chairman Craddick’s letter is in response to BOEM’s request for comments on the preparation of a new National OCS Program, and can be read in full here. Upon completion, the National OCS Program for 2019-2024 will replace the National OCS Program for 2017-2022, which was approved on Jan. 17, 2017, and will succeed the National OCS Program for 2012-2017 on July 1, 2017.
Christi Craddick was elected statewide by the people of Texas in November 2012 to serve a six-year term as Texas Railroad Commissioner. A native of Midland, Christi is an attorney specializing in oil and gas, water, tax issues, electric deregulation and environmental policy.
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 http://www.rrc.texas.gov/about-us/.