Commissioner Christian Encourages Congress to Review Jones Act

March 29, 2018

AUSTIN– Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian (R – Texas) today encouraged Congress to review the Jones Act of 1920. In his letter, Christian said a provision of the Jones Act that restricts cargo from being transported between U.S. ports unless it is carried on American-flagged ships has created a situation in which many parts of the northeastern United States are forced to buy natural gas from Russia instead of purchasing from domestic sources, like Texas. 

“Energy security is national security,” said Christian. “We should not have policies in place that encourage buying foreign energy when we have a surplus of natural gas in our own backyard.” 

In 2017, the U.S. exported more natural gas than it imported for the first time since 1957. 

“Much like the former ban on crude oil exports, this provision is a relic of a previous time that serves no practical purpose in the modern world,” continued Christian. “As the United States positions itself to surpass Saudi Arabia and Russia as the world’s top energy producer, it is imperative we take advantage of this blessing and move closer to energy security.” 

You can read Commissioner Christian’s letter here.

A lifelong conservative businessman, Wayne Christian was elected to join the Railroad Commission of Texas in November 2016. In 1996, Christian was elected to the House of Representatives. During this time, Christian served as Vice-Chair of Regulated Industries and as a multi-term member of the Energy Resource Committee. On these committees, he had direct oversight of the Railroad Commission and accumulated a strong record of standing for free markets and against burdensome regulations.

About the Railroad Commission:
Our mission is to serve Texas by our stewardship of natural resources and the environment, our concern for personal and community safety, and our support of enhanced development and economic vitality for the benefit of Texans. The Commission has a long and proud history of service to both Texas and to the nation, including almost 100 years regulating the oil and gas industry. The Commission also has jurisdiction over alternative fuels safety, natural gas utilities, surface mining and intrastate pipelines. Established in 1891, the Railroad Commission of Texas is the oldest regulatory agency in the state. To learn more, please visit