The resignation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Region 6 administrator does not change the institutional problem with the agency’s enforcement philosophy, Oklahoma Republican Sen. James Inhofe told The Daily Caller on Monday.
The ranking member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works said that while it was right for Al Armendariz to resign in the wake of his comments positively comparing oil and gas regulation enforcement to Roman crucifixions, the EPA, under President Barack Obama, still has a problem with how it treats America’s energy producers.
“It is not just Armendariz. There are a lot of other Armendarizes around,” Inhofe told TheDC, explaining the problem has not been solved with the Region 6 administrator’s exit.
“We watch these guys. We get the complaints from people who are being run out of business by the EPA, and he’s one but there are several others also,” he said.
Inhofe added that his investigation into the manner the EPA dealings with oil and gas companies — particularly those engaged in hydraulic fracturing — will continue.
The Oklahoma senator’s investigation will include a look into how the EPA treated Range Resources — the Fort Worth-based drilling company that the EPA imposed an expensive emergency order on alleging water contamination on the part of the company, only to withdraw the order 15 months later. He noted, however, that there are many companies that have not been able to fight the EPA’s mandates.
“The big question nobody talks about is, what about all those companies that didn’t fight it? ‘$33,000 a day? I’m out of business.’ How many companies today are out of business because they just couldn’t stand up to them?” he said.