Texas Oil Regulator Encourages Companies to Cut Russia Ties

Texas Oil Regulator Encourages Companies to Cut Russia Ties
RRC commissioners strongly encourage all Western oil and gas companies to cut Russia ties.

The Texas Railroad Commission (RRC), which has regulatory jurisdiction over oil and gas in the state, has revealed that its commissioners “strongly encourage” all Western oil and gas companies to cut ties with “any” Russian oil and gas business.

The RRC highlighted that major oil and gas companies such as BP and Shell had announced their divestment of ownership in Russian oil and gas companies recently and noted that its commissioners “firmly support” these actions. 

“Energy security is national security, and that’s clearer than ever,” RRC Chairman Wayne Christian said in an organization statement.

“The United States, our European allies, and major oil and gas producers should immediately sever all ties with Russia – period. Western democracies shouldn’t fuel Putin’s unjust war against a peaceful and democratic nation,” Christian added in the statement.

“Instead, oil and gas should be purchased from reliable and trusted allies or produced here at home. I call on President Biden to end his illogical stance on oil and gas and unleash American producers in defense of Ukraine and democracy,” Christian went on to say.

RRC Commissioner Christi Craddick said, “I support the actions of BP and Shell and encourage other international energy providers to divest from Russian companies and markets”.

“Texas producers are ready, willing, and able to supply oil and gas on a global scale, and I encourage President Biden to support Ukraine by releasing the chokehold on American energy production,” Craddick added.

Fellow RRC Commissioner Jim Wright said, “the Russian war against Ukraine is a forceful reminder of the importance of American-made energy and that domestic energy policy is crucially intertwined with U.S. foreign policy”.

“The exploration and production of oil and gas does not occur overnight, which is why it is essential to have consistent, predictable, energy policies that encourage and promote development. Maintaining our domestic production is not only vital to America’s national security interest, but those of our allies around the globe,” Wright added.

Texas Oil & Gas Associations

In a separate statement sent to Rigzone on March 2, the Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners Association’s (TIPRO) President, Ed Longanecker, said, “energy security is national security, and Texas plays a critical role in powering our own economy and enhancing the security of our global allies”.

“Countries around the world and leading oil and natural gas producers are uniting against Russia's aggressions. We now need decisive leadership and action from policy leaders in Washington, D.C., to help stabilize world energy markets by supporting domestic oil and natural gas production, energy infrastructure and expanded exports of crude oil and liquefied natural gas (LNG),” Longanecker added in the statement.

Longanecker went on to say that the decision to release additional reserves from America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) is not a long-term solution to address rising energy prices or geopolitical conflicts. 

In a statement posted on its site on February 24, the Texas Oil & Gas Association (TXOGA) President, Todd Staples, said the invasion of Ukraine was “extremely concerning”.

“This conflict and the impact on global markets underscore the importance of strong domestic energy production,” Staples said in the statement at the time.

“National security is directly tied to energy security, and we need policies that do not curtail infrastructure or investment in oil and natural gas development,” he added in the statement.

Texas Oil and Gas

Texas is the top crude oil and natural gas producing state in the U.S., according to a facts page on the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s website, which was last updated on April 15, 2021.

In 2020, Texas accounted for 43 percent of the nation’s crude oil production and 26 percent of its marketed natural gas production, according to the facts page. The state’s 31 petroleum refineries can process almost 5.9 million barrels of crude oil per day, the page outlined, adding that this was 31 percent of the U.S. refining capacity as of January 2020.

To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com

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