In 2006, when I first began serving as the president of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, many people around the state and nation talked about the Permian Basin like its best days were behind it. Some took joy in writing these obituaries, and some have begun to do so once again.
Then, just like now, we all knew the brightest days for the Permian Basin were ahead of us because of the true grit of the people who call it home.
The Permian Basin community is legendary, not only because of the hydrocarbons thousands of feet beneath us, but because of the perseverance of the people around us.
It takes a special kind of person to take a handful of humble hope and with it build companies with international impact that give back to this community in innumerous ways. Operators and service companies, freight line drivers and roadway construction crews—all are willing to lay it all on the line and bet on themselves.
All Americans have benefited from the efforts of Permian Basin entrepreneurs, providing world with affordable, reliable, and abundant domestic energy.
The PBPA has taken direct action in Washington, D.C., in Austin, and in Santa Fe, New Mexico, to advocate on behalf of our industry and the thousands of jobs that make this country operate. We are thankful for the leaders that have been responsive to our requests and many are working hand in hand with us to ensure a vibrant and diverse energy economy for generations to come.
The days ahead will remain tough. There is no doubt about it. Every portion of the energy sector is vital but we are all in perilous times. The industry has already seen large layoffs and a number of bankruptcies. In particular, our friends in the service sector are in trouble these days and the impact to the employees and their families is the most difficult challenge of all.
Each and every day that the economy continues to lag behind previous years, we see the real impacts to member companies, our communities, and the special people all around the Permian Basin.
But we are also witnessing the things that make our community special. Mask donations and entrepreneurial creativity abound and we are constantly reminded of how important our communities are.
The wildcatter spirit alive in the Permian Basin is one of our greatest strengths. Our communities have seen the great things we have built be destroyed by actions outside of our control, but each and every time we have built a better, stronger and more prosperous Permian Basin. We will do so again.
Those who doubt Permian Basin resiliency and resolve will again be proven wrong.
These are indeed challenging times, and they may be for a while longer. It will take time for our communities to fully recover from the ongoing health and economic tragedy, but make no mistake about it—the Permian Basin will recover, stronger and more unified than ever before.