Stay tuned for the most up-to-date information concerning breaking news on all new legislation, regulations, and events affecting the industry and the Permian Basin.

For additional industry news, check out PBPA's official publication, the Permian Basin Oil & Gas magazine.


Rare Permian Basin lizard gets federal protections, sparking criticism from the oil and gas industry

May 21, 2024

Marfa Public Radio

For decades, environmentalists and researchers have rallied for the federal government to protect the dunes sagebrush lizard, the small reptile that makes its home across West Texas and Eastern New Mexico. Now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is declaring the lizard an endangered species, a process that will provide the tiny creature with protections under the Endangered Species Act.

“This lizard is getting closer and closer to extinction,” said Michael Robinson, a spokesperson for the Center For Biological Diversity, a group that has long advocated for listing the dunes sagebrush lizard as an endangered species.

Increased drilling in the Permian Basin over the past 15 years, along with the advent of...


‘State of Oil’ examined at OC

May 8, 2024

Odessa American

by Bob Campbell

The Permian Basin’s energy industry is a very complex equation, but the region shows every sign of being well able to manage it.

That’s part of what speakers at Wednesday’s Texas Tribune forum on “West Texas: The State of Oil” in the Zant Community Room at the Saulsbury Campus Center at Odessa College where 40 people heard three experts on the subject.

Moderated by the Tribune’s Basin correspondent, Carlos Nogueras Ramos, the noon luncheon featured Permian Basin Petroleum Association Executive Vice President Stephen Robertson, Midland Hispanic Chamber of Commerce CEO Savannah Morales and John Wood Group Director of Decarbonization Katherine Zimmerman of Houston.

Robertson began by noting that the Basin last year produced 42 percent of America’s oil and 20 percent of its natural gas, meaning that if Texas were a nation it would be the fourth-largest oil nation in the world.

“Twenty years ago in this region, the joke was who will be the last to shut off the lights?” Robertson said, adding that the development of...


Upstream energy jobs grow by most in 13 years

May 4, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

Upstream oil and natural gas jobs in Texas have continued to regain the losses seen beginning in 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold.

Citing Texas Workforce Commission data, the Texas Oil & Gas Association reports employment in the upstream sector of the state’s oil and gas industry grew by 4,500 jobs in March, the highest single month growth in upstream jobs since June of 2011.

“The latest employment numbers show what we all know here in the Permian, that America and the world run on energy and the Permian Basin will continue to provide it. These energy needs will continue to provide good paying jobs for thousands for many years to come,” Ben Shepperd, president, Permian Basin Petroleum Association, commented to the Reporter-Telegram by email.

“March’s historic increase in jobs in the Texas oil and natural gas industry’s upstream sector is a result of this industry’s commitment to ensuring that American energy leadership’s homebase continues to be here in the Lone Star State,” said Todd Staples,...


Variety of speakers, topics set for environmental seminar

May 4, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

A varied combination of regulators and industry representatives will gather next week for Midland College’s Permian Basin Environmental Regulatory Seminar.

The annual event will be held May 9 at the Bush Convention Center, with registration opening at 7:30 a.m.

“It’s a good balance of regulators and industry,” said Chelsy Gann, director of workforce continuing education at Midland College.

Speakers will address a wide variety of topics, from induced seismicity to ‘forever chemicals’ to methane.

Gann said she believes Kaylin McDermett’s presentation on “PFAS in Oil and Gas — Understanding the Facts, Breaking Down the Myths and Protecting Your Operations” will be a hot topic. McDermett is with Geosyntec Consultants.

Another presentation she believes will be popular focuses on drones in the oilpatch. Dann Schantz with Venture Robotics will present “Drones and Their Operational Impacts in the Petroleum...

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Pfluger introduces legislation to overturn EPA’S Methane regulations Targeting american energy producers

April 11, 2024

WASHINGTON, DC — Today, Congressman August Pfluger joined Congressman Jodey Arrington (TX-19) and Tracey Mann (KS-01) in introducing a Congressional Review Act to overturn the Biden administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) efforts to further regulate oil and gas producers.

“One of the only promises President Biden has followed through on is his campaign vow to ‘end fossil fuels,’” said Rep. Pfluger. “This Methane Rule imposes excessive and costly restrictions on energy producers in regions like the Permian Basin that I represent and others around the Nation. It will drive costs up even higher for all Americans already suffering under record-breaking inflation driven mostly by energy costs. The President should be promoting energy independence to lower costs and strengthen our national security.”

“Since his first day in office, Biden has unleashed a whole-of-government assault on domestic energy production, the lifeblood of our economy and cornerstone of our national security,” said Rep. Arrington. “The...


NM Senator: Anti-energy industry attacks will continue

March 22, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

New Mexico’s legislative session ended last month, and there were a number of bills that could have affected the region’s oil and gas industry.

Luckily, many of those bills fell by the wayside during the 30-day session, reported New Mexico State Sen. Greg Nibert.

Nibert, who had served in the state House of Representatives since 2016, was appointed to the State Senate by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham just before the session started in January. He succeeded Sen. Stuart Ingle, who retired.

“Six months ago, I was minority leader in the House,” Nibert told members of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association at their membership luncheon Thursday.” Since then, my life has been a whirlwind.”

He told the gathering that 583 bills were introduced to be the session and only 66 passed both houses. Among the agenda items set forth by Gov. Grisham was reworking the state’s Oil and Gas Law that had been enacted in the 1930s. While the industry agrees the law needs to be updated, Nibert said the version under...

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Oilfield thieves target variety of valuables

March 20, 2024

Odessa American

by Bob Campbell

Oilfield thefts have become a pressing problem and the Permian Basin Petroleum, Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners and Texas Oil & Gas associations say it is a plague that requires a multi-faceted cure.

“Individual crimes of convenience where someone comes across a tool left out in the open or an unlocked, unmonitored vehicle are one thing,” said PBPA President Ben Shepperd. “However, what members of the oil and gas industry have been experiencing more recently in the field has been described as organized crime.

“Traditional targets of copper, tools or other heavy equipment that might be relatively easy to move are not the only targets. Full tanker truck loads of produced oil have been removed from private locations throughout the Permian Basin.”

Shepperd said loads of tubing and even an entire pumpjack, have also been stolen.

“These illegal activities require organization and communication before, during and after the commission of the crime by multiple involved parties,” he said. “When it...


How lesser prairie chicken continues to impact oil production

March 4, 2024

The Journal Record

by Kathryn McNutt

Conservation efforts to preserve the lesser prairie chicken – ongoing for more than two decades – have intensified with the grassland bird’s listing under the Endangered Species Act one year ago.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed the bird as “endangered” in part of its current five-state range and “threatened” in the rest effective March 27.

The lesser prairie chicken’s range covers a portion of the oil-rich Permian Basin along the New Mexico-Texas state line – where they are listed as endangered – and extends into parts of Colorado, Kansas and northwest Oklahoma.

Environmentalists have long sought stronger federal protections for the bird, noting it is severely at risk due to oil and gas development, livestock grazing and farming, and the construction of roads and power lines.

Opponents of the listing are “beating the drum of federal overreach,” Wayne Walker, president of Common Ground Capital, said last week while in Oklahoma City to meet with oil industry consultants and executives about the...


Environmentalists fight oil investments

March 4, 2024

Odessa American

by Bob Campbell

Environmentalist groups are pressuring banks and insurance companies not to finance or insure oil and natural gas company projects and they have done some damage.

The Permian Basin Petroleum, Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners and Texas Oil & Gas associations say the battle has been joined and the outcome is uncertain.

“Those opposed to the oil and gas industry have utilized a number of different weapons to try and harm the industry,” PBPA President Ben Shepherd said. “Included in this arsenal have been a variety of attempts to increase the costs of oil and gas operations.

“The end game here appears to be to make other energy sources economically competitive, not by decreasing the real world costs of those energy sources, which to be fair has also been attempted through government subsidies, but by increasing the cost of oil and gas energy development.”

Shepherd said regulatory burdens have traditionally been the preferred tool to manipulate the free market and increase the costs on energy...


New Mexico legislative session deemed positive for energy

March 2, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

New Mexico’s annual legislative session recently ended in mid-February and oil and gas producers are now grading its impact.

“As with so many legislative sessions, New Mexico’s session has to be viewed through the scope of we don’t get the opportunity to accomplish a lot of positive things but what negative things you can prevent. That’s the way we approach the sessions in New Mexico,” Stephen Robertson, executive vice president, Permian Basin Petroleum Association, told Grant Swartzwelder, president of OTA Environmental Solutions, during his Oilfield Strong webinar.

Chris Mitton, government affairs advisor with Civitas Resources, noted this is the company’s first experience with New Mexico legislative sessions and he appreciated working with PBPA, New Mexico Oil and Gas Association and others. It was an adjustment from his experience with Colorado legislative sessions and he said he appreciated the opportunity to talk about how Civitas operates, its focus on being a good partner to local communities and the state...


Texas to consider suing EPA over new emissions rule

February 28, 2024

News West 9

ODESSA, Texas — The Environmental Protection Agency is cracking down on the oil and gas industry by issuing a new rule that will soon be posted in the Federal Register.

According to an e-mail sent to members of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, the Texas Railroad Commission is asking the Texas Attorney General to consider suing the EPA over the new rule.

A climate review is expected to be published next Friday, March 8, 2024, that will outline how methane emissions can be reduced by oil and gas operators. Some of the key points mentioned by the EPA include a new rule that would reduce 58 million tons of methane emissions from 2024 to 2028.

Heightened methane detection...


Christi Craddick addresses Permian Basin Petroleum Association

February 17, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

The Permian Basin Petroleum Association hosted Railroad Commission Chair Christi Craddick at its February membership luncheon.

Her presentation focused on the rising number of challenges the agency faces from the federal government, from seeking primacy from the Environmental Protection Agency to permit Class VI wells for carbon dioxide injection to uncertainty around the federal dollars to be used for plugging wells under the Inflation Reduction Act.

Craddick told the audience one of the biggest concerns is proposed methane emission rules that have been finalized but not yet published in the Federal Register. She said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has been asked to file a lawsuit against the rules once they are published.

Official Article


Craddick decries rise in federal initiatives challenging energy industry

February 15, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

Federal regulatory initiatives are challenging the Railroad Commission as never before in its century-old history.

Railroad Commission Chairman Christi Craddick decried initiatives from tailpipe emission standards she said are designed to force consumers to buy electric vehicles to methane emissions rules she said are crippling the state’s oil and gas industry.

Addressing the monthly membership luncheon of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, she said once the Environmental Protection Agency’s finalized methane rules are published, the Texas Attorney General has been asked to file a lawsuit.

Craddick also expressed frustration waiting for the Environmental Protection Agency to make a decision on the state’s application for primacy over permitting Class VI wells for...


IPAA joins 25 oil and gas associations urging action on “unfair, unworkable, uneconomic” methane regulations

February 12, 2024

World Oil

(WO) – On Friday, the Independent Petroleum Association (IPAA) and 25 other state, regional and national oil and gas associations wrote to congressional leadership urging action on methane regulations that could have a detrimental impact on our nation's energy supply.

In their letter, the groups express "serious concerns regarding the impact of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) new methane emissions regulations (Subparts OOOOb and OOOOc) and the Methane Emissions Reduction Program (Methane Tax) on oil and gas marginal well owners. Both actions threaten marginal wells continued operations by creating unfair, unworkable, and uneconomic regulations. These small business energy producers need assistance to find a regulatory or legislative solution to mitigate these threats."

The letter provides definitions and information on the impact to producers in the following areas:

  • Regulatory Applicability to Marginal Wells
  • Subparts OOOOb and...

Permian production exceed 6 million barrels, analysts say

February 9, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

In a testament to the technological and efficiency gains seen in the Permian Basin, the region saw oil production surge despite a decline in drilling activity.

East Daley Analytics estimates Permian Basin production ended 2023 at a record 6.115 million barrels of oil a day. The analytics firm puts that growth at 500,000 barrels a day, up 8.8% in December 2023 from production of 5.62 million barrels a day at the end of 2022. Analysts said growth was stronger in the second half of the year as new natural gas processing infrastructure and natural gas pipeline expansions entered service, allowing producers to bring more wells online.

“The Permian Basin continues to defy all expectations,” Ben Shepperd, president of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, told the Reporter-Telegram by email. “The hard-working men and women in the industry deserve a word of thanks from every American for producing the products our country, and the world, depend on. Unfortunately, the relentless legislative and regulatory attacks on our...


Oilfield technology advances exponentially: Apache Corp., PBPA, TIPRO report myriad innovations

February 7, 2024

Odessa American

by Bob Campbell

Attendees walk through the outdoor displays at the Permian Basin International Oil Show on its opening day Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021, at the Ector County Coliseum. (OA File Photo)

The energy industry was quick to join the technological revolution in the 1980s and before and it has applied its brainpower and resources to more than keep pace since then.

The Apache Corp. and the Permian Basin Petroleum and Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners associations say the United States and the world have benefited as a result.

“At Apache, we focus on delivering top operational performance,” an Apache spokeswoman said from Houston. “Over the last three years we have made significant strides to more efficiently and responsibly extract hydrocarbons including the elimination of routine flaring across U.S. onshore operations.

“We achieved our lowest total recordable incident rate in 18 years, increased our safety observation rate and actions by 10 percent, reduced methane emissions across U.S. onshore operations by...


Permian to buck national trend of falling output

January 27, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

US crude oil and natural gas production are expected to across the nation’s Lower 48 shale basis in February, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

Except for the mighty Permian Basin, that is.

According to the EIA’s latest Drilling Productivity Report, oil output from the Permian Basin is expected to rise 5,000 barrels per day from January to February. Output will be led by production from new wells – 418,000 barrels per day. That gain will offset a decline in production from legacy wells, which is forecast to fall 413,000 barrels a day. The EIA forecasts the Permian Basin will produce 5,974,000 barrels per day in February.

Permian Basin natural gas production is predicted to rise 11,000 cubic feet per day. Output from new wells is expected to rise 777,000 cubic feet, offsetting the 655,000 cubic feet decline in output from legacy wells. According to the EIA, the Permian will produce 24,393,000 cubic feet per day in February.

“It is no surprise to our members and those living, working,...


Has the recent cold been affecting oil production in West Texas?

January 26, 2024

NewsWest 9

by Hunter Alcocer

The recent cold in the Permian Basin has had an affect on oil production.

However, it’s not always the cold itself that will be an issue.

“Weather of all types can have impact on operations out in the field," Stephen Robertson, executive vice president of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, said. "One of the biggest concerns when it comes to cold temperatures is not always so much the cold but it’s the wind that can come along with it, the disruption in powerlines. If you knock down powerlines and you can’t get electricity out into the field that’s when you can have some issues with the cold.”

While the temperatures and winds can slow things down, as long as power is getting out to operations in the field, everything will still run as long as its energized. Robertson said the grid did well this time around.

“During this winter storm event that we had in January, the peak power surge for the entire state was over 78,000 megawatts," Robertson said. "Yet the system held in there this time and largely and...


Power grid holds up to Heather

January 25, 2024

Odessa American

by Bob Campbell

Winter Storm Heather put Texas’ power grid to the test and the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, State Rep. Brooks Landgraf and the Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners and Texas Pipeline associations are gratified that it passed.

Rated the third coldest onslaught in recent state history behind Winter Storms Uri in February 2021 and Elliott in December 2022, Heather’s peak power surge of 78,138 megawatts surpassed Uri’s 69,812 when outages caused 246 deaths in Texas and left hundreds of thousands shivering in the dark.

“There is no question that efforts to ensure reliable electric supply are vital for Texans,” PBPA President Ben Shepperd said. “There is also no question that PBPA members are committed to doing our part to ensure robust natural gas production.

“To that end, natural gas was the largest percentage of the grid mix throughout this winter storm and that is surely because of the efforts that operators had undertaken to staff field assets in incredibly difficult times. PBPA members worked...


Politics of energy industry assessed

January 18, 2024

Odessa American

by Bob Campbell

The 2024 presidential election is important to Texas’ energy industry, but the global need for oil and natural gas and the industry’s high dollar innovations to protect the environment will be more telling in the long run.

That’s according to the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, State Rep. Brooks Landgraf and the Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners and Texas Oil & Gas associations, who say the next president will need more sophistication about the issue.

“Elections have consequences and this year is no exception,” PBPA President Ben Shepperd said Tuesday. “The president controls who runs the government agencies that regulate us on a daily basis and this administration has been more hostile to the oil and gas industry than any in history.

“While that might sound like hyperbole, what other president ever made a public declaration to end fossil fuels?”

Shepperd said there have been dozens of federal administrative actions since Biden took office three years ago that were aimed at...


Permian Basin Petroleum Association to honor Dick Sivalls

January 13, 2024

Midland Reporter-Telegram

By Mella McEwen

Leaders of the Permian Basin oil and gas industry will gather Thursday, January 18 at the Petroleum Club to honor Dick Sivalls as the Permian Basin Petroleum Association’s Top Hand.

“Dick Sivalls is a fantastic man who exemplifies all of the best traits of a PBPA Top Hand. His leadership in the industry, the PBPA and the communities in the Permian Basin, especially Odessa,” Ben Shepperd, president of the PBPA, told the Reporter-Telegram by email.

He added, “Dick is a legendary engineer who has trained many engineers in industry today. He has also served as a distinguished PBPA chairman helping us develop into the organization we are today.”

Sivalls himself figures his family has been in the energy business for 123 years. “I think I figured out my grandfather started in Ohio in 1900,” he told the Reporter-Telegram in a telephone interview.

His grandfather’s company — Black, Sivalls and Bryson — was similar to Sivalls Industries, making oilfield equipment.

“There was no good way...

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RRC Issues Weather Alert Ahead of Arctic Blast

January 11, 2024

by Mella McEwen

Midland Reporter-Telegram

An arctic blast is headed to the Permian Basin, and warnings are being issued to prepare for temperatures to fall into the teens, with wind chills possibly falling below zero.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas Wednesday issued a “weather watch” beginning January 15 through January 17, an advance notification of expected significant weather and higher electrical demand and the potential for lower reserves.

Wind chill values by Monday morning could be below zero in the Panhandle and across West Texas. For Central Texas, North Texas, West Central Texas, wind chill values will be in the single digits.

The Railroad Commission Thursday issued a notice to operators ahead of the expected frigid temperatures. The agency urges residents and oil and gas producers alike to watch weather forecasts and safety alerts during the cold weather.

In its notice to oil and gas...

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Sivalls is PBPA's newest Top Hand

January 9, 2024

Odessa American

By Bob Campbell

Pioneer Odessa industrialist C. Richard “Dick” Sivalls will receive his second major award in three months when he is designated the Permian Basin Petroleum Association’s “Top Hand” at a Jan. 18 reception and banquet at the Petroleum Club in Midland.

In October Sivalls was named the Permian Basin International Oil Show’s Honoree.

“The Top Hand Award is the highest award bestowed by PBPA members and one of the highest honors given to an energy professional in the Permian Basin,” a PBPA spokesman said. “Being a Top Hand means you exemplify all the best qualities of professional and community service.”

Sivalls is president and CEO of Sivalls Inc., where he’s worked since 1958, and he remains...

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PBPA speaker: Hydrocarbon demand growth continues decade from now

October 9, 2023

by Mella McEwen

Midland Reporter-Telegram

Government policies, markets and a macro environment are all ingredients in what Jeffrey Tillery, chief operating officer of Veriten, an energy-focused knowledge platform, called “this soup” that is an energy outlook.

Serving as the luncheon keynote speaker at the Permian Basin Petroleum Association’s Annual Meeting, Tillery offered a 10-year outlook, which he described as a typical corporate planning horizon. But he also offered a forecast for just three years from now.

In 2026, he said, natural gas will continue to...

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PBPA Panel: Innovations needed from water to air

October 7, 2023

by Mella McEwen

Midland Reporter-Telegram

Producing oil and natural gas has moved far beyond drilling holes in the ground.

A range of innovations in the industry was the focus of a panel discussion at the Permian Basin Petroleum Association’s Annual Meeting at the Petroleum Club.

Sustainability is part of the industry’s future and “we need to find ways to embrace it,” said Chris Davis, senior vice president, Milestone Carbon. His company just announced plans for a carbon capture and sequestration hub on about 10,000 acres that straddle Midland and Upton counties and is evaluating a larger site for a Delaware Basin hub.

What he’s learned after working 20 years in the upstream space is the importance of energy and the need to pursue sustainability.

“We need to pursue an economic, practical pathway to help the industry sustainably manage waste and emissions,” he said.

Progress is being made in sustainably managing....


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U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service extends public comment period on proposal to list dunes sagebrush lizard under the Endangered Species Act

August 29, 2023

On August 14, 2023, the PBPA submitted a request for an extension of the public comment period before the final submission of our more extensive comments. In response, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released this press release on August 29, 2023.

"The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is extending the public comment period seeking public input on a proposal to list the dunes sagebrush lizard as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. The public comment period will now be open for 90 days, closing October 2, 2023.

The Service is committed to having a robust public engagement process as it considers a proposal to list the dunes sagebrush lizard as endangered. The extension gives all interested parties additional time to provide comments. In addition to this extension, on July 31, 2023, the Service held a virtual Public Information Session and Public Hearing where it accepted verbal comments for the record.

The dunes sagebrush lizard is a rare species found only in the shinnery oak sand dune ecosystems in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico....


MOTRAN: Production, Tax Revenue Show Permian's Impact

July 5, 2023 Reporter-Telegram


The following on oil and natural gas production inside the Permian Basin and severance taxes from the Permian Basin were taken from a recent Midland-Odessa Transportation Alliance (MOTRAN) newsletter.

  • According to the Energy Information Administration, the Permian Basin produces 72% of Texas’ crude oil. That’s 40% of US oil.
  • The Permian Basin reached a record high natural gas production of 21 billion cubic feet daily in 2022, 14% more than the 2021 average. That increase continues in 2023 with an increase of 60 million cubic feet per day in the first four months of the year compared to the same period of 2022. The Permian Basin is now the nation’s second-largest natural gas-producing basin, accounting for 24% of US gas production.
  • In just the Texas Department of Transportation’s 12-county Odessa District, oil production rose more than 72.8 million...
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Biden’s War On Oil And Gas Shifts To A Permian Basin Lizard

July 5, 2023

by David Blackmon

As part of a massive, pre-holiday weekend document dump by the Biden administration on June 30, the domestic oil and gas industry received an unwelcome gift from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS), one that shifts Mr. Biden’s continuing war on oil and gas to the Permian Basin. In a notice published in the Federal Register, USFWS said it has determined a need to list the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard, long a topic of concern and controversy, as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.

Though a day past deadline, the notice of proposed listing will presumably satisfy a court order requiring the agency to issue a decision no later than June 29. It also upends the conduct of a longstanding conservation...


PBPA's Response to the USFWS Proposing Listing Dunes Sagebrush Lizard

June 30, 2023

The day before Americans begin the weekend celebration of our independence, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that it would be proposing the listing of the dunes sagebrush lizard as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. Not only does this continue what has become a tradition of this administration announcing major regulatory action on the eve of national holidays, but it is once again an attack by this administration against American independence and the most prolific energy producing region in the United States, the Permian Basin.

Energy production in the Permian Basin, which is a national leader not just in oil and natural gas production, but also in wind and solar energy production, provides energy independence to our nation. The listing of the dunes sagebrush lizard under the Endangered Species Act, when there has been such a tremendous state and private conservation initiative to protect the species and its habitat, is a slap in the face to not just state and private conservationists, but to all those around the world who rely on the energy...


Pfluger details global importance of Permian energy

June 27, 2023

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

“This industry is the most important tool we have in our national security arsenal,” said Rep. August Pfluger.

The San Angelo Republican, who represents District 11, which includes Midland and Odessa, addressed energy issues Tuesday with the Permian Basin Petroleum Association at the Petroleum Club.

He told the gathering he was elected to the House of Representatives to highlight the national security implications of the oil and natural gas industry. The Permian Basin, he said, is the epicenter of a shale revolution that has lifted a billion people out of poverty and changed the geopolitical equation, giving the...

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Energy Industry Hopes for even more Permitting Reform

June 3, 2023

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

With very little time remaining to address the nation’s debt ceiling, the final form of an agreement headed to the president late Thursday night for his signature.

Permian Basin oil and gas operators are closely watching to see how the agreement between the White House and Republican negotiators affects much-desired permitting reform. The initial agreement already includes minor changes to the National Environmental Policy Act, including a one-year limit on environmental assessments and a two-year limit on environmental impact statements.

“We are extremely pleased that Speaker McCarthy and his team included permitting reform as part of their negotiations,” Ben Shepperd, president of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, told the Reporter-Telegram by email. “The PBPA and our membership have been advocating for federal....



Permian operators alarmed by rise in oilfield theft

June 3, 2023

Midland Reporter-Telegram

by Mella McEwen

Permian Basin oil and gas operators are alarmed at something beyond volatile oil and natural gas prices and pending regulations.

Several members of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association are expressing concern over what they see as a dramatic increase in oilfield crime in the Permian Basin.

“There’s always been thefts, but what seems to be happening is on another level,” Ben Shepperd, president of the PBPA, told the Reporter-Telegram in a telephone interview. One member even told him a pumping unit had been stolen, he said....

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Determination, Delays, and a Dose of Drama

June 1, 2023

by Julie Anderson

If the Regular Session of the 88th Texas Legislature were to be summarized in bullet points, here’s how it might read:

  • Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar projects a $32.7 billion surplus, giving lawmakers a spending cushion prior to the 140-day session.
  • On Jan. 10, Texas Secretary of State Jane Nelson convenes the 88th Texas Legislative Session on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives.
  • On Feb. 13, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announces his top 30.......

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PBPA joined a coalition of seven energy associations in a letter to Congressional leaders urging them to support the bipartisan agreement to raise the debt ceiling that includes some permitting reforms

May 30, 2023

Dear Speaker McCarthy, Senator Schumer, Representative Jeffries, and Senator McConnell:

We, the undersigned oil and natural gas trade associations, represent the hardworking men and women who produce 70% of our nation’s energy supply. We recognize America’s economic strength comes from a combination of our abundant natural resources and the innovators who convert them into the substantial energy that powers our modern lives. Thanks to the entrepreneurial spirit and the willingness of our members to take enormous risks, our nation and others around the world benefit from life-sustaining energy that keeps people warm in the winter, gets them to work and school to better their lives, and puts food on the table. We are living longer thanks to the domestic oil and natural gas that provide the feedstock for thousands of products used every day, from anything with a computer chip to medicines that save millions of lives on a global scale.

Recognizing the human, economic, and strategic value of harnessing our nation’s energy, Congress has played a key role in creating the...


PBPA Joins 42 Energy Trade Groups and Associations in Opposing NHTSA Administrator Nominee

May 3, 2023

The Honorable Maria Cantwell Chair

U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation

254 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Ted Cruz Ranking Member

U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation

512 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510

Re: Opposition to the Nomination of Ann Carlson as Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Dear Chairwoman Cantwell and Ranking Member Cruz:

We are 43 associations representing millions of workers all across the country. We provide 70% of the nation’s energy that supports life-sustaining functions such as keeping Americans warm in the winter, getting them to work and school to better their lives, powering ICUs and medical devices, and delivering food to the dinner table. Oil and natural gas provide the feedstock for thousands of products used every day, from anything with a computer chip to fertilizer to feed the world. American oil and natural gas are developed under strict environmental controls...


Industry, Texas sue over lesser prairie-chicken species rule

March 23, 2023

As seen in the Oil & Gas Journal

The Permian Basin Petroleum Association, five ranchers’ associations, and Texas have sued the Biden administration over the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) listing of the northern population of the lesser prairie-chicken as threatened and the southern population of the same species as endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

The species, a kind of grouse scattered across five states, is found in oil and gas drilling areas and cattle grazing areas in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Colorado. The FWS, a part of the Interior Department, published its determinations Nov. 25.

The final rule violated Interior’s own policies for application of the Endangered Species Act, and violated the Administrative Procedure Act with arbitrary and unsubstantiated conclusions arbitrary population segments, according to the lawsuit by the petroleum...

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The Permian to Putin: The Oil Industry Reacts

April 4, 2022

The Permian to Putin: The Oil Industry Reacts | A One Question/Basin PBS Live Town Hall. Hosted by Becky Ferguson. Hear from local experts in the field on the effects of the was on the Permian Basin oil. Underwritten by Diamondback Energy. Sponsored by The Permian Basin Area Foundation.

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A Conversation with Ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison, Sponsored by PBPA

April 6, 2022

Kay Bailey Hutchison is a household name for multiple generations of Texans. Between her 20-year tenure as a U.S. senator from Texas and her time as U.S. ambassador to NATO, just about everyone knows of her.

And while Hutchison has seen a lot in her career, she’s keeping a close eye on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. What’s her take on the war there, the future of NATO, and the United States’ place in it all?

Hear her speak on all this and more when you join The Texas Tribune at 4 p.m. Central on Wednesday, April 6, for a timely conversation with former NATO ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison.


Shepperd: Permian Basin produces Global Security

September 22, 2019

As featured in the September 22, 2019 edition of the Midland Reporter-Telegram

As the entire world continues to seek answers for the coordinated terrorist attacks on Saudi oil facilities over the weekend, one thing is clearer than ever, and it is just how important the Permian Basin is during these times.

While not new, these terrorist attacks continue to threaten America and her allies around the globe. But this time, record production of domestic oil and natural gas, especially in our region, serve as a counterbalance to what would normally be a cause of great concern for our nation.

Today, because of the success of petroleum producers in the Permian Basin, there is not worldwide panic, there is not an immediate need to tap strategic reserves, and there is no threat of gasoline shortages for Americans preparing for their workdays.

At this time, it’s anticipated that this 5 million-barrel a day strike from production will have serious and lasting...


Energy Security and Environmental Stewardship are not Mutually Exclusive

August 1, 2019

As featured in The Permian Basin Petroleum Association's official magazine, The Permian Basin Oil and Gas Magazine. (August 2019)

For too long, too many people have accepted the assumption that we have to choose between domestic energy production and environmental stewardship. While the Permian Basin Petroleum Association has never accepted this false dilemma, politicians and policy makers have chosen to act as though these were the only paths moving forward.

Thankfully today, more and more Americans are realizing this is not the case.

With record breaking oil and gas production in the Permian Basin, we are still anticipating a decrease in carbon emissions in the United States in 2019 and 2020 as we have seen in a historical trend since at least the year 2000. The abundance of oil and natural gas being produced in the Permian Basin and across the nation has encouraged the transition of energy generation to cleaner burning natural gas and we are now a net exporter of crude oil.

These impacts cannot be understated. With the...


PBPA Effort Yields Results

August 28, 2018

Sunset Commission Unanimously Rejects DPS Proposal to Close License Offices

Austin, Texas-Today, the Texas Sunset Commission met in Austin and responsibly pushed back against a DPS proposal that would eliminate up to 87 Driver’s License offices across rural Texas, including the booming Permian Basin.

“Today, the Members of the Sunset Commission from across the state unanimously rejected the DPS proposal to close the offices in our region and across the state and I am very proud of the Legislature for listening to our concerns and the concerns of all Texans.” said PBPA President, Ben Shepperd.

This rejection will offer the Legislature guidance on how to proceed on this issue when the Texas Legislature convenes in January 2019.

He also added, “We are hopeful that our efforts, and the efforts of the public at large, to increase efficiency in other areas at DPS will continue and are thankful for the leadership of Chairman Birdwell, Vice-Chairman Paddie and Senators Buckingham, Hall, Nichols, and Watson as well as Representatives Flynn,...


PBPA Opposes DPS Office Closures

August 24, 2018

Midland, Texas - Today, The Permian Basin Petroleum Association (PBPA) stated their opposition to a recommendation by the Texas Sunset Commission to close drivers license offices in the Permian Basin and across much of rural West Texas.

“We oppose the potential closing of drivers license offices in the Permian Basin because of the rapid growth of the oil and gas industry and the need for our member companies to be licensed as required by state law. The Permian Basin is the most prolific source of energy production in the United States and we cannot remove resources that are vital to the economic growth of the region and the state.”

PBPA works to effectively advocate for the growth, prosperity, and best interests of the Permian Basin petroleum industry,

“The hundreds of member companies and thousands of individuals that make up our association are also joined in these efforts by Permian leaders like Senator Charles Perry, Senator Kel Seliger, Representative Tom Craddick, Representative Drew Darby, and Representative Brooks Landgraf and we...


PBPA v. DOI Decision

September 2, 2015

U.S. District Court Finds for PBPA, Vacates Lesser Prairie Chicken Listing

(MIDLAND, TEXAS) Yesterday, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas granted summary judgment in favor of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association and vacated the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) rule listing the Lesser Prairie Chicken (LPC) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. In PBPA et al. v. Department of Interior et al, Senior U.S. District Judge Robert Junell concluded that the decision to list the LPC was arbitrary and capricious under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and that the agency failed to properly apply its Policy for Evaluation of Conservation Efforts When Making Listing Decisions (PECE Policy) to conservation efforts already undertaken on millions of acres across five states to improve habitat for and diminish threats to the LPC.

In response to the ruling, PBPA President, Ben Shepperd, issued the following statement: “The PBPA applauds Judge Junell’s decision in our suit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the...