Texas Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian recently authored a letter to the Biden Administration’s U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) opposing their pending rule which would designate the Dune Sagebrush Lizard (DSL) as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). With the DSL primarily residing in the Permian Basin region, this classification will specifically impact hydrocarbon exploration and production in West Texas.
In the letter, Commissioner Christian detailed concerns that this unnecessary action could severely stifle Texas oil and natural gas operations, weaken American energy independence, and jeopardize U.S. national security.
“Texas must fight the Biden Administration on this most recent ‘weaponization’ of the ESA trying to shut down oil and gas operations in the Permian Basin,” said Commissioner Christian.
“Radical environmentalists’ favorite legal weapon against responsible fossil fuel production has always been the ESA—whether it’s the Lesser Prairie Chicken or the Dune Sagebrush Lizard,” continued Christian. “President Biden has made it his top priority to end domestic fossil fuel production. And his administration has used every attack possible to see it done be it through limiting federal permitting, an EPA non-attainment designation, excessive methane monitoring requirements, and now another unnecessary ESA designation. Right now, the world needs more energy and it needs more Texas oil and gas, and all this designation will accomplish is to limit that.”
You can read the letter here.