Texas Punishes San Antonio COG for Disclosing Oil/Gas Pollution

April 30, 2014

Smog in the San Antonio metro area is a problem. The Alamo Area Council of Governments, the regional area which is supposed to control smog, did a study of how oil and gas drilling was affecting the city's air quality. Then, on April 4, 2014, it released some results — which suggested drilling in the Eagle Ford shale did indeed contribute a lot to smog.

About a week later, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, which had funded the study, cut AACOG's budget by 25 percent. A TCEQ spokesperson said this was because AACOG had broken an agreement not to release any results without TCEQ approval. The story came out first in the Austin American-Statesman, a subscription-only newspaper, and was further reported by InsideClimate News.