Gov. Abbott Ready to Protect the Texas Oil & Gas industry
Texas Governor Greg Abbott said that he'll push back against President Biden's oil and gas agenda.
In an article published by the Texas Tribune last week, Gov. Abbott said he is ready to protect the Texas fossil fuel industry. Abbott made the remarks while visiting the Permian Basin last week, and also announced the steps Texas will take against the Biden administration.
Gov. Abbott said during the news conference, "I am in Midland to make clear that Texas is going to protect the oil and gas industry from any type of hostile attack from Washington, D.C. Texas is not going to stand idly by and watch the Biden administration kill jobs in Midland, in Odessa or any other place across the entire region."
Gov. Abbott signed an executive order that would "direct every state agency to use all lawful powers and tools to challenge any federal action that threatens the" energy sector in Texas while also announcing his support for new legislation that "prohibits cities and counties from banning natural gas appliances."
President Biden made good on his climate change campaign promises by, among other things, freezing new oil drilling on federal land. That move was even met with challenges from four state U.S. House Democrats who have asked Biden to rescind the freeze. (Biden also signed an executive order halting construction on the Keystone XL Pipeline.)
The freeze does not impact Texas as much as it does New Mexico, but Abbott says that the Biden administration "will be trying to take actions that will make it harder, more difficult and more costly" for oil & gas business here in Texas.
Land Commissioner George P. Bush says his office is ready to comply with Abbott's order. Bush released a statement that said, "Following the certification of election results, I immediately directed the Texas General Land Office to begin preparing for an onslaught of executive orders and policy decisions by the Administration that are detrimental to the Texas oil and gas economy."
The Texas Democratic Party responded to Abbott's news conference saying Abbott was not "being honest with working Texans," saying that the path forward is through renewable sources, not fossil fuels.
However, there are some Texas Democrats opposed to the Biden administration's recent actions concerning energy leasing on federal lands, including Congressman Vicente Gonzalez.
Sounds like this fight has just begun and Abbott's ready to take on whatever comes his way.
It seems certain that Governor Abbott will bring this topic up in tonight's (Monday, February 1) State of the State Address. At 7 PM, Abbott will address the people of Texas to comment on the the status of the Lone Star State. You can tune in on one of these channels if you get them, or stream the address live over at cbsaustin.com.