Texas Fights Biden Policies
Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced that he has issued an executive order relating to the protection of Texas’ energy industry from federal overreach.
Under the order, Abbott directed every state agency to use all lawful powers and tools to challenge any federal action “that threatens the continued strength, vitality, and independence of the energy industry”.
“Each state agency should work to identify potential litigation, notice-and-comment opportunities, and any other means of preventing federal overreach within the law,” Abbott stated in the order.
“This executive order supersedes all previous orders in conflict or inconsistent with its terms and shall remain in effect and in full force unless it is modified, amended, rescinded, or superseded by the governor,” he added.
In the order, Abbott noted that regulators can act sensibly to ensure safe and efficient operation by the energy sector in Texas and elsewhere but warned that regulatory overreach can damage the stability of the Texas economy and the livelihoods of countless Texans.
Abbott outlined that the energy industry is vital to economic growth in the state of Texas, employs hundreds of thousands of Texans and produces billions of dollars in taxes and royalties to the state. The governor went on to note that the continued success of Texas’ energy industry will aid a smooth recovery from the Covid-19 disaster, both in Texas and across the country, because Texas is the economic engine of America and the source of her energy security.
U.S. President Joe Biden signaled “extreme hostility” toward the energy industry by rejoining the “job-killing” Paris Agreement and signing Executive Order 13990, which revoked the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, Abbott highlighted in his order. He also outlined that order 13990 directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to rescind its 2020 methane rule “as an apparent prelude to burdensome new regulation of the energy industry’s emissions in Texas and in sister states” and warned that more and greater threats to the Texas energy sector seem imminent “as President Biden embraces Green New Deal policies”.
A fact sheet released by the White House last week noted that Biden has set ambitious goals that will ensure America and the world can meet the urgent demands of the climate crisis, while empowering American workers and businesses to lead a clean energy revolution that achieves a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035 and puts the United States on an irreversible path to a net-zero economy by 2050. In remarks made before signing executive actions on tackling climate change, U.S. President Biden said, “it’s not time for small measures”, adding that “we need to be bold”.
Prior to Abbott’s executive order announcement, he held a roundtable discussion in Odessa, Texas, with energy workers, leaders, and advocates on how the state can continue to support the energy industry and its workers and ensure a more prosperous future for Texas.
Abbott was elected in 2014 as the 48th Governor of Texas. Prior to his election, he was the 50th and longest-serving Attorney General of the state. He has also previously served as a Justice on the Texas Supreme Court and as a State District Judge in Harris County.
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