Permian Basin represents at Texas Energy Day
For Chevron’s Birlie Bourgeois, Texas Energy Day is about much more than business—it’s personal.
“I feel that what we do makes a difference,” said Bourgeois, a Permian Basin asset manager who participated in the annual event in Austin on March 7.
“When I go to work every day, I’m not only there for a paycheck or to help maximize profits for Chevron,” he said. “I’m there because I know that the energy we produce allows people around the world to have the quality of life that we take for granted here. That’s what really drives me.”
Occurring annually since 2017, Texas Energy Day brings together hundreds of employees, partners and supporters of the Texas energy industry, including droves of representatives from the Permian Basin, to educate and advocate for oil and gas production at the state Capitol.
In FY 2022, the Texas oil and natural gas industry paid over $24.7B in state and local taxes and state royalties and provided 443,000 direct jobs
More than 60 companies, associations and chambers of commerce from across the state sponsored this year’s event, which featured an “Energy Plaza” for immersive learning that included a virtual reality tour of an offshore rig, a propane-powered school bus with emissions reducing technology, an AirMethane mobile command center, two heavy-duty hydrogen fuel cell trucks and drone technology used in leak detection, among other technologies.
“I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to the hundreds of Texas oil and gas employees in Austin today, many from my hometown of Midland in the heart of the Permian Basin, the world’s most prolific oilfield,” said Railroad Commission Chairman Christi Craddick. “We are thankful for your service and that you have gathered at the Capitol today to educate lawmakers about why the work you do in this industry is so important.”
In fiscal year 2022 alone, the Texas oil and natural gas industry paid over $24.7 billion in state and local taxes and state royalties and provided 443,000 direct jobs for Texans, according to the Texas Oil & Gas Association. The state leads the nation in oil and natural gas production, pipeline miles, and refining capacity, and ranks fourth in the world in production of crude oil.
“A robust oil and natural gas industry matters to all Texans, whether you live near the oil patch or not,” said Todd Staples, President of the Texas Oil & Gas Association. “Texas Energy Day at the Capitol is an opportunity to showcase the many ways this industry is enhancing lives, growing economies and protecting the environment.”
Chevron’s Bourgeois went to Texas Energy Day to help spread that message, and to also highlight his company’s lower carbon efforts in the Permian Basin. Chevron is working to reduce its impact in the Permian Basin through centralized facilities, improved methane detection capabilities and flaring reductions.
“I have four daughters, and I want the best for them,” he said. “It’s not just helping them get into the best schools, it’s about having a lower carbon environment for them in the future as well.”
Lonnie Evans, an emergency management advisor at Chevron, said ahead of the event that his hope is to open the floor to honest dialogue.
“I’m not going there with an agenda,” he said. “I’m going to accurately represent Chevron, answer questions and challenge misconceptions.”
Evans, a sixth-generation Texan and father of two, said his participation in Texas Energy Day was both a personal and professional mission as well.
“I have a Texas lineage. My family, home and heritage are all Texas,” he said. “I care about the state, and I want to help make it better for future generations.”