Report: Air quality harmed as Texas oil production booms
By DAVID WARREN
DALLAS (AP) - An environmental group says the booming production of oil and natural gas in West Texas is exposing residents to unhealthy levels of air pollution.
The Environmental Integrity Project noted in a report released Thursday that the Permian Basin, which extends into New Mexico , is one of the most productive hydrocarbon regions in the world.
But the report says a consequence is dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide in the air around Odessa and other locations.
The project's associate director, Ilan Levin, says regulators need to have stricter oversight of air pollution permits while penalizing polluters who violate the permits. He also says more air quality monitors are needed.
A spokeswoman for the Texas Oil and Gas Association said the industry group is reviewing the report but is confident that Permian Basin production benefits Texas and the United States.
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