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AFPM '19: Senator Cruz calls for defense of American oil and gas jobs

By ADRIENNE BLUME, Executive Editor, Hydrocarbon Processing

Chet Thompson, President of AFPM, presented the AFPM Leadership Award to the Honorable Ted Cruz, US Senator (R-Texas), at the General Session on Monday morning. Thompson lauded Senator Cruz for his longtime advocacy of the US refining and petrochemical industries and his work for Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) reform.

After receiving a standing ovation, Senator Cruz took the podium to welcome attendees to Texas and to thank AFPM for the award. He touted the US refining and petrochemical industries for providing both jobs and essential fuels and products for Americans.

“I am proud to be here today as the foremost defendant of oil and gas, and abundant energy jobs in the United States,” Cruz said.

Texas is the leading US producer of crude oil and natural gas, providing one-third of the nation’s oil and gas.

The refining and petrochemical industries alone support 688,000 jobs in Texas and more than 3 MM jobs nationwide, with salaries that are well above the nationwide average.

“That is why I continue to fight for oil and gas jobs,” Senator Cruz asserted, “because the primary beneficiaries are American workers and their families.”

Moving on to energy regulation, Senator Cruz called the RFS “a broken regulatory system” that has imposed billions of dollars of unnecessary costs on US refiners. In November 2017, when Cruz and several other senators met with President Trump to discuss RFS reform, Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) for biofuels were trading at $0.80 apiece, equating to more than $13 B of artificial regulatory costs for fossil fuel producers.

The marketplace, rather than politicians, should determine “the cornucopia of energy” resources in ways that will best benefit American jobs, Cruz asserted. The senator called the Green New Deal economic stimulus proposal “a $19-T proposal so unrealistic, every Democrat will be sure to embrace it.”

“Looking ahead, there’s still a lot more to do,” he said. “Energy equals jobs. It isn’t complicated—and when it comes to energy, I believe, and Americans believe, and Texans believe that all sources of energy should be used.”

In closing, Senator Cruz remarked, “We know there will come a time when the US—and the world—moves away from fossil fuels … But the move to new energy sources will be driven by innovation in the private sector, not by radical politicians in Washington.” “I am honored and proud to stand with each and every one of you,” he said. 

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