• Reforming oil and gas oversight in Texas

  • Texas Unplugged and Abandoned Wells, 2020

  • A bankrupt oil and gas operator left dozens of orphan wells on Molly Rooke's land in Refugio County. In 2019, one of the wells blew out, spraying volatile chemicals into the air and onto nearby wetlands for a day and half, before the Railroad Commission responded to temporarily shut in the well.
  • 2015 – 2020 E&P Bankruptcy Filings by State as of November 30, 2020.

    (Adapted from Hayes and Boone, LLP)

    As oil and gas companies go bankrupt, Texas landowners face risks from orphaned wells

  • The RRC is asking taxpayers to help pay for cleanup

    Oil and Gas Well Plugging and Remediation - Method of Financing

    General Revenue Fund

    Oil and Gas Regulation and Cleanup Fund

    Source: Railroad Commission of Texas - Legislative Appropriations Request Fiscal Years 2022-2023

Our Mission

Commission Shift is building public support to hold the Railroad Commission of Texas accountable to its mission in a shifting energy landscape.

Our Approach

Commission Shift is educating and organizing a wide array of Texans to build support for changes at the Railroad Commission of Texas that improve the agency’s function, transparency, and accountability to people and places impacted by the oil and gas industry.

What is the Railroad Commission of Texas?

Contrary to what its name implies, the Railroad Commission of Texas has no authority over railroads. Instead, the agency oversees oil and gas development, coal and uranium mining, and gas utility service in Texas, among other functions. Its mission is to serve Texas through stewardship of natural resources and the environment, concern for personal and community safety, and support of enhanced development and economic vitality for the benefit of Texans. Too often, the Commission has promoted accelerated development of oil and gas over all other parts of its mission -- to the detriment of natural resources and the environment, safety, and economic vitality.




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