Abbott pans Green New Deal, praises Texas oil and gas industry
Gov. Greg Abbott told a convention of Texas oil and gas producers Wednesday not to worry about Democrats’ Green New Deal, an ambitious agenda to combat climate change that the governor said is so far out and far left that it will only ensure Republican political dominance.
“The Green New Deal is nothing to fear,” Abbott told the 73rd Annual Convention and Legislative Call-Up of the Texas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners Association, meeting at the Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol.
“The reason I say that, I consider the Green New Deal to be the permanent red deal,” said Abbott, referring not to the color’s association with communism but its common use in the United States in recent years as the partisan hue of Republicans to Democratic blue.
“It’s so socialistic,” Abbott said. “It costs so many trillions of dollars. It’s completely unfeasible in any way whatsoever. It shows the way socialism has hijacked the forces of capitalism.”
“Let me tell you, socialism fails, capitalism works,” Abbott said. “Texas will never a socialistic state.”
The Green New Deal — a 14-page, nonbinding resolution unveiled this month by Democrats led by U.S. Sen. Ed Markey of Massachusetts, and U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York — is a far-reaching plan to get the United States off fossil fuels, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and guarantee good-paying clean energy jobs. It’s been praised as a worthy statement of purpose to address an urgent crisis, and attacked as wild-eyed folly that would destroy the American way of life and lead to a massive expansion of government power.
Abbott said the oil and gas industry is central to what makes the Texas economy the strongest in the country and the nation’s leading exporting state for 16 years.
Abbott praised the Texas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners Association, which works to preserve the ability of its members to explore and produce oil and natural gas, for making Texas and the United States the world leader in energy production.
“I’ll be honest with you, Texas would not be Texas without what TIPRO is doing,” Abbott said, promising his help in providing the industry necessary infrastructure and battling what he calls a “patchwork quilt” of local regulation.
Abbott said that energy producers in Texas were increasing production while doing it in “more environmentally sensitive ways” that, he said, in Texas had reduced nitrogen oxide emissions by 45 percent.
“That is the equivalent of reducing or eliminating 85 million passenger vehicles from the roads of the state of Texas,” Abbott said. “The Third World countries in the emerging markets that are the lead producers of greenhouse gases, they are going to cleaner-burning fuels of natural gas produced right here in Texas. It will be China, it will be India, it will be all of these other countries. So you are providing good, clean-burning energy for the entire globe for generations to come.”