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BOOM: A Conversation About How the Oil and Gas Sector Impacts Texas

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Odessa College – Saulsbury Campus Center

201 W. University Blvd.

Odessa, TX 79764

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In a state that produces more crude and more natural gas than any other, is it any wonder the sun rises and sets on the price of West Texas Intermediate? Part of it is cultural — 118 years after Spindletop, the Texas brand is inevitably and inextricably tied to gushers, dry holes, rig counts and the like. But mostly it’s pure economics. Revenue directly generated through oil and gas extraction is 8.5 percent of our gross state product. Add the indirect benefits of oil and gas activity, and that contribution to GSP jumps, per industry advocates, to nearly 30%. Nearly 350,000 jobs in a state with a historically low unemployment rate are said to be tied to oil and gas, and the industry provides $102 billion in tax base for purposes of public education funding.

But of course, the story doesn’t stop there. While no one disputes the enormity of the industry’s successes, there’s always a question about the cost and who bears it. Negative consequences for physical and social infrastructure, including a strain on natural resources, are among the red flags raised high. The price tag to repair roads damaged by heavy truck traffic, or the affordability of housing, or the difficulty of keeping public sector employees from leaping off to find their fortune in the oil fields — these are concerns that counties and communities are grappling with each day.

How do we keep the good thing we have going — for the benefit of all Texans? Join The Texas Tribune in person or on our livestream for a conversation on the state of play in Texas’ oil and gas sector.

Our panelists will be:

  • State Rep. Brooks Landgraf, R-Odessa
  • Ben Shepperd, president of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association

The conversation will be moderated by Ross Ramsey, executive editor of The Texas Tribune.

Additional panelists for this event will be announced shortly.

This event will be held in the Zant Community Room, located on the second floor of the Saulsbury Campus Center (SCC on the campus map). Attendees should enter the campus at the intersection of Robertson St. and W. University Blvd. Parking will be available in the North Lot, located on both sides of the campus entrance in front of the Saulsbury Campus Center. The event is free, open to the public and includes a light lunch.



The Texas Tribune is a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues. Learn more and become a member at texastribune.org.

This event is hosted by Odessa College. Foundation support is provided by the Catena Foundation, Energy Foundation, Texas Rural Funders Collaborative and T.L.L. Temple Foundation.

Though donors and corporate sponsors underwrite The Texas Tribune events, they play no role in determining the content, panelists or line of questioning.

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Odessa College – Saulsbury Campus Center

201 W. University Blvd.

Odessa, TX 79764

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