Abstract

For a number of years the oil and gas fields of West Texas have supplied Texas and the nation with large amounts of fossil fuel. In recent years the Texas Air Control Board has adopted regulations which directly affect the exploration, production, and processing of these energy sources. The purpose of this paper is to show how adopted air pollution control regulations affect the various pollution control regulations affect the various phases of development of these fuel sources phases of development of these fuel sources in this age where concern for both a clean environment and abundant energy supplies is paramount. paramount

Introduction

In 1967, the 60th Texas Legislature passed the Texas Clean Air Act. The stated purpose of the Act was to "…safeguard the air resources of the state from pollution by controlling or abating air pollution and, emissions of air contaminants, consistent with the protection of health, general welfare, and physical property of the people, including the esthetic enjoyment of the air resources by the people and the maintenance of adequate visibility." The Act establishes the Texas Air Control Board as the state air pollution control agency, and names the Board as the "principal authority in the state on matters relating to the quality of the air resources in the state and for setting standards, criteria, levels, and emission limits for air contaminants and pollution control." The Act also provides for an Executive Director to be administrator of air control activities for the Board. His responsibilities include any and all things necessary to achieve the purposes and objectives of the Act and to purposes and objectives of the Act and to provide general supervision over all personnel provide general supervision over all personnel employed by the Board. The Executive Director has established 12 Air Quality Control Regions in the state. Within each region the Executive Director has established a regional office at a convenient location. These regions and their corresponding regional offices are designated in Figure 1. The Regional Supervisor is responsible for the operations of the regional office as well as all air pollution control activities within his assigned region. In January 1972 a regional office of the Texas Air Control Board, Air Quality Control Region 6, was established in Odessa, Texas. From the time of establishment of the Odessa regional office it became apparent that the largest number of air pollution problems in the region were those directly related to the production and/or processing of oil and gas from the rich deposits in West Texas. This paper is concerned with the air pollution problems encountered by the oil and gas industry in West Texas, and how that industry might operate in compliance with the Regulations established by the Board.

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