ORCID (Links to author’s additional scholarship at ORCID.org)
This article explains how the Railroad Commission of Texas became the world’s most prominent oil and gas regulator and how it can become the world’s role model again. It explains how the Railroad Commission built the world’s modern oil and gas industry by stopping oil and gas waste and ensuring stable prices. And it describes the crisis now facing the industry—overproduction of oil and gas is wasting resources that will be worth more in the future. The United States is emerging from the biggest oil and gas boom that the world has ever seen and its production now dwarfs that of any other country. Texas now produces far more oil than any other state, and more than any Middle Eastern country other than Saudi Arabia. As a result, the eyes of the global oil industry are again on Texas. The article lays out an agenda for rebuilding a world-class oil and gas regulator, explaining how better data and smart limits can protect both the economy and the environment.
This paper is posted with permission and is a pre-print of its forthcoming appearance in a 2021 OGEL Special Issue on "Law and Policy for Gas Flaring in a Low-carbon Economy."
Oil, Gas & Energy Law Journal
James W. Coleman, Rebuilding the Texas Railroad Commission, OIL, GAS & ENERGY L. J. (forthcoming 2021)