Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 6 Administrator Al Armendariz has resigned due to his comments about crucifying the oil and gas industry. According to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson:
“Over the weekend Dr. Armendariz offered his resignation, which I accepted. I respect the difficult decision he made and his wish to avoid distracting from the important work of the agency. We are all grateful for Dr. Armendariz's service to EPA and to our nation.”The decision comes days after Armendariz – who oversaw oil-and-gas producing states including Texas and Louisiana – drew GOP attacks over 2010 comments that surfaced in which he compared his enforcement strategy to the way ancient Roman conquerors would use terror to keep order. A number of GOP lawmakers, shortly after the 2010 comments surfaced last week, called for his ouster despite his apology for the remarks.
EPA’s Region 6 covers Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. Last Wednesday, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) unveiled a 2010 video of the regional administrator making controversial comments about EPA enforcement against oil and gas companies. (The Hill, 4/30/3012, Politico, 4/30/2012)