Why vote for Eddie Espinoza and the Green Party?

A vote for Eddie Espinoza for Railroad Commissioner is a vote to clean up the messes caused by fossil fuel extraction, phase out fossil fuels, and protect freshwater. The Texas Railroad Commission can help Texas achieve affordable and sustainable energy independence by working towards 100% renewable energy and batteries.

Global warming is making parts of Texas practically unlivable in the summer. As our drought continues, Texas families need a railroad commissioner who will strongly advocate to cap orphaned, zombie, and unplugged idle oil and gas wells. Our Texas environment needs a commissioner who will ban fracking, and call for the transition of fossil fuel jobs away from drilling to plugging and cleanup.

We must address these problems now, before they get worse, before they become more expensive to fix, and before they contaminate more fresh water, soil, and air.

Eddie will be a trustworthy and independent railroad commissioner who will hold fossil fuel corporations and their advocates, no matter how rich and powerful, accountable for the damage they’ve caused to Texas ecosystems and public health. 

Like all Green Party candidates, Eddie accepts only donations from individuals, not corporations, PACs, or lobbyists. You can trust him to stand up for the people and the environment we depend on, because he is beholden to no one but the public.   

Eddie is not a politician, he’s a problem solver. At age 19 he enlisted in the US Army and was given the responsibility to drive a Bradley fighting vehicle into battle. He earned a combat infantry badge for his service during Desert Storm. After graduating from college, he taught in Texas Public Schools for 26 years, helping thousands of students develop basic reading and math skills.

His experiences as a teacher inspired him to become an advocate for young people, working class families, and the environment. 

You can trust Eddie to represent the people of Texas and advocate for policies that benefit our environment and public health.

Action Plan

1. Clean Up and Phase Out the Fossil Fuel Industry

  • Cap and clean up abandoned gas wells, pipeline leaks, and other sources of fossil fuels pollution.
  • No fracking, no new fossil fuel projects. 
  • Phase out current fossil fuel energy plants.
  • Keep Texas livable, and energy affordable, with a timely transition from fossil fuels to clean renewable energy.

2. Protect Water

  • Prioritize the protection of fresh water resources in all commission work and decisions.
  • Ban fracking. Save fresh water for drinking, not drilling!
  • Expand fresh water storage capacity by protecting low lying areas that may act as lakes and ponds.

3. Rename the Railroad Commission

  • The name “Railroad Commission” is misleading. The commission needs a new name that reflects what it does, like “Texas Energy Commission.”
  • As former Commissioner Ryan Sitton once said, changing the commission’s name is “about transparency, good government, and keeping people informed about what we’re doing.”

4. Prioritize Lowering Energy Costs for Texans,  Not Oil and Gas Bailouts

  • Broaden the commission’s work to deliver affordable, sustainable, 100% renewable energy to Texans.
  • Empower the commission to help Texas regionalize the energy grid.
  • No more subsidies,  handouts or bailouts to the oil and gas industry.

5. Monitoring and Enforcement 

  • The Railroad Commission has only 65 inspectors who each cover an average of 7,300 miles of pipeline all over the state. Hire more inspectors!
  • Improve oversight for orphaned and inactive wells, flaring, and oil and gas waste pits.
  • Make sure Texas is in compliance with federal environmental regulations from the EPA. 

6. Ethics and Conflicts of Interest

  • Eliminate the commission’s economic and political ties to the oil and gas industry with strict conflict of interest policies.
  • Avoid rushing oil and gas development at the expense of safety, economic vitality, natural resources, and the environment.

7. Public Participation / Open Meetings / Transparency

  • Encourage input from public interest groups like the Sierra Club and Commission Shift
  • Public participation in decision making should be welcomed.
  • All commission meetings should be livestreamed to the public, with no closed sessions.
  • All info related to commission work should be easily accessible on the commission’s website.

8. Campaign Finance Reform

  • Restrict who can donate to Railroad Commissioner candidates, and limit campaign contributions to $5,000, just like statewide judicial races.
  • Limit campaign fundraising periods to an 18-month period surrounding the election, rather than allowing donations throughout the commissioners’ six-year terms.
  • Define “personal or private” interest in Texas statutes, to clarify that elected officials must recuse themselves from decisions that involve a company listed on the Personal Financial Statement they submit to the Texas Ethics Commission.