Texas Oil & Gas President Talks Regulation, Earthquakes & Adjusting to Lower Oil Prices

The president of the oil and gas industry says it supports regulation and recognizes there could be a correlation between wastewater injection and seismic activity, but he point to other studies that have not found a “direct link.”

By Laura RiceNovember 4, 2015 3:38 pm,

The oil and gas industry supports new and enhanced rules…. Not exactly words you’d expect to read from the pen of the Texas Oil and Gas Association. Association president Todd Staples recently wrote an op-ed saying the industry supports regulation that makes for safe workers and communities.

Staples says there’s a public “misconception” about regulations in the oil and gas industry.

“Oil and natural gas in Texas is among the absolute most heavily regulated industries in our state,” Staples says, going on to say they support a “robust, science-based approach” that can be both “pro-jobs and pro-environment.”

Staples says he wants to address the industry’s position on regulation now because of opposition that has thwarted fracking and other industry efforts.

“I think there are anti-fossil fuels, anti-energy groups that some are not presenting the truth, are not presenting the facts,” he says.

Because of a “renaissance” of the oil industry, new practices have come under scrunity. Southern Methodist University released a prominent study that said wastewater injection, part of the process involved in fracking, has a “likely causation” to increased seismic activity, especially in North Texas. Staples says studies done by the Railroad Commission “could not find that direct link.”

“Industry recognizes that there could be a correlation between disposal wells and seismic activity,” Staples says. “The SMU study has been proved to fall in line with science-based protocols there.”

Listen to the full interview in the audio player above.