Texas regulators issued about 1,500 fewer oil and natural gas drilling permits in 2023 than in 2022, with December permitting continuing the downward trend across most of the state. 

The Railroad Commission of Texas (RRC) issued a total of 669 drilling permits last month, up by about 30 from November’s count, but down by 200 compared with December 2022. Natural gas drilling permits also were up by five on a monthly basis to 38, but down on an annual basis by 454, according to RRC data. 

From November to December, the San Antonio area, aka District 1, and the Midland area, aka District 8, each had drilling permits increase by 15. However, both saw decreases compared with December 2022. 

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