fighting the facilities causing environmental crises across Texas
Texas Campaign for the Environment works in coalition with local, state, and national groups to stop harmful fossil fuel projects. Plastic pollution and climate change are both being driven by the shortsighted and wasteful practices of oil and gas companies. The industry is targeting Texas for a massive expansion of fossil fuel export and plastics production infrastructure. TCE is empowering Texans to fight these dirty projects at every stage of the chain of pollution—from wellheads in the fracking fields and pipeline routes criss-crossing the state, to petrochemical plants, new proposed plastics facilities and export terminals planned up and down the Gulf Coast. We are promoting instead projects that create new jobs in sectors like renewable energy — solar and wind power, and energy efficient construction and renovation.
gulf coast fossil fuel infrastructure fight
Industry giants are targeting the Gulf Coast to build numerous oil and gas export terminals and massive new petrochemical facilities that turn fossil fuels into plastics. As a result of this strategy, the World Economic Forum predicts plastic production will double in the next 20 years—and by 2050 there will be more plastic by weight than fish in the world’s oceans! As scientists continue to find microscopic particles of plastic everywhere they look, from Arctic snow to the table salt in our homes, it’s clear that plastic pollution is already endangering the food chain and our own health. Doubling that problem would be nothing short of catastrophic.
These proposed plastics facilities and the industrial infrastructure that supports them also threaten critical wildlife habitat, as well as fishing and eco-tourism economies in beloved destinations such as Corpus Christi, Port Aransas and Surfside Beach.
In the Coastal Bend, we’ve helped form the Coastal Alliance to Protect Our Environment to fight industry tax subsidies for new plastics facilities and export terminals, and we’re helping oppose environmentally damaging seawater desalination plants that are needed for the planned industrial build-out.
In Brazoria County we are working with allies and residents in communities such as Surfside Beach to fight crude export facilities such as Sea Port Oil Terminal (SPOT) and Texas GulfLinks by submitting their comments. TCE organizers went door-to-door in February 2020 to alert Brazoria County residents about SPOT. With opposition mounting, the permitting process is now on hold.
Learn more about our work in the Coastal Bend and in the Brazoria/Houston/Galveston area along the Gulf Coast and how you can get involved with TCE and our partners Coastal Alliance for the Protection of our Environment and the For the Greater Good coalition.
fracking and dangers to our health and environment
Fracking pollutes our air, land and water with chemicals harmful to human physiology and the environment. New research found that living near fracking wells, especially ones that are heavily flaring off gas is associated with preterm births especially in the population of Latina women.The underground injection of fracking wastewater results in earthquakes (also known as frackquakes) damaging property and threatening the stability of reservoirs. Fracking is producing billions of gallons of toxic wastewater that can pose a risk to underground water sources.
Especially in West Texas drilling companies are extracting more natural gas than they can transport and sell. They are simply releasing and burning it in open air flaring and venting. In fact, the amount of gas being wasted in the Permian Basin is greater than many U.S. states use in an entire year! In 2019, West Texas operators flared $420 million worth of gas and paid no taxes on this waste. Wasted and flared gas is a major contributor to the climate change crisis. This flaring also produces so much local air pollution that now our “clear skies” wilderness in the Big Bend region is becoming clouded with smog.
In May 2020, TCE and allies filed legal protests to the Texas Railroad Commission when ConocoPhillips wanted to extend their flaring permits at 41 sites near Odessa. By September 2020, ConocoPhillips withdrew their applications and decided they didn’t need to flare in the future at these wells. This is evidence that flaring is wasteful and unnecessary.
We are connecting Texans to resources that help fight back against wasteful and polluting practices. If you’re interested in learning more about the Railroad Commission, fracking, and air pollution, complete this form to take action and stay in touch.
Take Action this week.
Ask TCEQ – Protect Air Quality and Keep Public Input!
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), our state agency charged with protecting Texans’ air quality, wants to use out-dated information and weaken air quality monitoring and reporting at some marine fossil fuel facilities. They also want to cut off public comment on those facilities’ air pollution permits. Both moves would put Texans and the Gulf Coast environments at risk.
The already lax supervision of existing fossil fuel facilities in Texas allows bad operators to release volatile organic compounds and hazardous toxins like benzene into the air near Texas coastal communities. TCEQ’s new proposal, which is open to public comment this week, would make Coastal communities near these marine loading operations and proposed new fossil fuel marine operations even more vulnerable to air pollution. Join us in opposing this bad proposal from TCEQ.
Tell the TCEQ to strengthen important air quality monitoring and reporting requirements needed to protect the public health and environment. The TCEQ must improve and not further relax our environmental standards and must keep opportunities for public input on fossil fuel marine loading operations!
Submit written comments with one click today! Feel free to personalize your comments. The deadline to send your public comments is this Friday, Jan. 22 at 11:59 PM.
Read on to participate in the Public Hearing this week! The more voices speaking up, the better! Here are some basic Talking Points to assist you to speak. Please personalize these with your own story or reason why you want to maintain good Texas environmental protection standards.
Your voice is vital! Register by 5 PM today, Wednesday, January 20th to speak tomorrow at a public hearing on Thursday, January 21 about TCEQ’s bad proposal. To register to speak up at the hearing, send an email with the subject line “Register for NRPN 2020-030-OTH-NR” to firstname.lastname@example.org or leave Stephanie a voicemail at 512-239-5654.
In your Email or Voicemail provide the following: Your Name, Your Title (optional or put Gulf Coast resident or Texas resident), Whom you represent (self or company/client), Your Mailing address, Your Phone number; A statement, “I wish to provide official testimony.”
You will receive a confirmation link in your email to join the Public Hearing and speak. On Thursday, Jan. 21, use your link to join and speak at the TCEQ hearing. You can also call in to listen 1-877-820-7831 and enter access code 269684#.
Special communication or other accommodation needs such as language translation of all documents and all speech during the meeting may be requested today to Gwen Ricco, Office of Legal Services at (512) 239-2678 or 1-800-RELAY-TX (TDD). You could ask her to reschedule the hearing if they have not already translated or made these provisions.
Even if your comments are brief, they will make a difference in showing the TCEQ that the public is opposed to weakening Texas environmental standards. Again, Here are some basic Talking Points to assist you to speak. Please personalize these with your own story or reason why you want to protect Texas environmental protection standards. Thank you.
For updates on the meeting, please check the TCEQ website.
In addition to the public meeting, you can submit written comments by this Friday, Jan. 22 at 11:59 PM by clicking here. Feel free to personalize your comments if you wish. Thank you for raising your voice and participating in the struggle for a pollution-free Texas!
Participate with Coastal Bend Communities
Corpus Christi and the surrounding Coastal Bend region is becoming a hotbed of industrial construction and toxic pollution. More crude oil and fracked gas is exported out of Corpus Christi than any other port in the country. Several massive desalination plants are being proposed to serve Industry and in the process dump millions of gallons of hyper-salty and chemical laden wastewater into the bay system. Industry is targeting the pocketbooks of local residents to increase their profits, while taxpayers would be left with billions of dollars in expenses and a polluted environment.
Area residents must to ask candidates for city and county offices whether they are going to stand up for the interests of the City’s residents or for the polluters. Texans who want to protect the natural treasures of the Coastal Bend and voice your concerns about the industrial build-out can fill out this form to get in touch and organize with TCE and our partners. Thank you.
Learn more about Fracking, Flaring, and the Texas Railroad Commission
The Texas Railroad Commission is the state agency responsible for regulating oil and gas operations in Texas. We are working to educate Texans about the impacts of this agency, its failure to protect our health and the environment, and how we can recreate it to ensure a healthier economy and environment for all.
To learn more about how we’re engaging our members with issues related to the Texas Railroad Commission, please complete this form to get in touch with us. Thank you.