Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

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After HB 40, What’s Next for Local Drilling Rules in Texas?

This year state lawmakers severely restricted the ability of Texas towns to regulate local oil and gas drilling. A law known as House Bill 40 was a reaction to a fracking ban passed by voters in the North Texas city of Denton. Denton has come to represent local fracking bans and clashes between local governments [...]

New Federal Regulation Coming For Oil and Gas Well Pollution

The federal government says the oil & gas industry is the largest industrial source of pollution that creates smog. In coming months, Texas drillers could learn what the government plans to do about it. New pollution rules could mean that thousands of oil & gas wells in Texas will have to have their leaks fixed. “It’s an [...]

Why Is the U.S. Still Importing So Much Oil?

Texas is leading the way in a massive boom in U.S. oil production: oil exports are higher than they’ve been since the 1950s, when the Suez Canal crisis caused a brief jump in shipments. Imports have dropped significantly, but even with that decline, Americans still import about a fourth of the oil they use. We called Tad Patzek, [...]

Does Drop In Oil Prices Make Texas Crude Too Expensive?

Recent financial news headlines have warned about: The dangers of “falling oil.” Or enduring the “Oil Crash of 2014.” Or having oil producers headed for “oblivion.” Could it really get that bad? Maybe, if it’s like it was a few decades ago. “There were bankruptcies everywhere,” said Ed Hirs, a Houston oil man and energy economist. “Exxon [...]

Perry: More American Energy to Counter Russian Aggression

Governor Rick Perry says the United States can keep Russia in check by increasing the production of oil and gas here at home.Perry spoke last night in Houston at a conference on energy and climate policy, sponsored by the conservative think tank the Texas Public Policy Foundation. “The reliance on oil has made us more dependent [...]

Flow Of Money From South Texas Oil Startles Economists

Economists made a surprising discovery when they measured the economic impact of oil & gas drilling in Texas. For the past four years, Thomsas Tunstall and a team of economists at University of Texas-San Antonio have been measuring the economic impact of surging oil & gas drilling in the rock formation called the Eagle Ford [...]

What Does Fossil Fuel Divestment Mean For Texas?

“I think it is worth asking ourselves as a society how much longer we think we need to have an oil economy.” — Michael Webber, UT Energy Institute This week in New York, the UN Climate Summit is underway, and the Rockefeller Foundation made news with the announcement that it will divest close to a billion dollars from fossil [...]

Oil And Gas Industry Added 10,500 Jobs In Second Quarter

From Houston Public Media: The oil and gas industry added 10,500 new jobs over the second quarter, according to industry news service Rigzone. That’s a two-thirds increase over the same period in 2013. Between April and June, companies in the oil and gas sector added more than 4,000 new positions in Texas. That gave the Lone [...]

Environmental Group Says Illegal Diesel Fracking Used in Texas

An environmental group says it’s found over a hundred oil or gas wells being drilled in Texas using techniques that the group says are illegal. At issue is “fracking” which injects huge quantities of water and chemicals deep underground. Fracking is what’s revolutionized drilling in Texas. The technique uses all sorts of chemicals including acids [...]

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