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Relating to the creation and activities of the Texas Produced Water Consortium.
No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
SB 601 would create the Texas Produced Water Consortium, which would be administratively housed at Texas Tech University, to partner with other Texas universities and work with stakeholders to reach specific goals. If enacted, the bill would establish an agency advisory council to advise the consortium on matters relating to the regulation, permitting, and treatment standards for fluid oil and gas waste. The consortium would be required to study the economic, environmental, and public health considerations of beneficial uses of fluid oil and gas waste and technology needed for those uses.
The bill would require the consortium to create a report for the purpose of suggesting changes to laws and administrative rules in order to enable beneficial uses of produced water, suggest guidance for permitting and testing standards, detail the economic feasibility of a pilot project for state participation in a produced water facility, and provide an economic model for using produced water in an economic and efficient way.
Produced water is naturally occurring water that emerges from the ground during the production of oil or gas. While a study to find economically beneficial uses of this water is a noble endeavor, Texas Action opposes SB 601 because it expands government beyond its proper scope. It is properly the place of private industry, rather than government, to conduct this type of research from which it stands to profit if cost effective beneficial uses of produced water are found to be feasible.