MIDLAND Texas Gov. Greg Abbott returned to the Permian Basin Tuesday where he picked up five endorsements from the state’s energy industry.

The endorsements were announced during an event hosted by 3S Services in Midland.

High-ranking members from the Texas energy industries were present as they announced their backing of the governor, who is seeking a third term with this year’s gubernatorial election campaign in full swing.

The primaries will be held on March 1 and early voting will begin on Feb. 14.

“We’re delighted to be here,” Texas Oil and Gas Association President Todd Staples said. “There’s a reason why Midland and the Permian Basin, is the energy capital of the world and it’s because of all the men and women here today that work hard every day to do their best to make Texas the number one state in the nation in the production of oil and natural gas.”

President of the Texas Oil and Gas Association and former Texas Commissioner of Agriculture Todd Staples, left, pledges his endorsement for the re-election of Texas Governor Greg Abbott, right, during a press conference Tuesday afternoon at 3S Services Pipeline in Midland. (Eli Hartman/Odessa American)

Staples touted the state’s high ranking for job growth, crediting the people in the oil and gas industries and Abbott’s policies as governor.

“We have a governor that is pro-business, pro-oil and gas and pro-jobs,” Staples said. “There’s a reason that Texas continues to rank number one in the country for job growth and it’s because of the men and women and the jobs that you do and the leaders like Abbott who understands that we can protect our environment and protect our economy at the same time and I’m proud to announce that the Texas oil and gas association good government committee is proud to endorse Greg Abbott for four more years.”

Other people who spoke at the event included Texas Alliance of Energy Producers President Jason Modglin and Texas Pipeline President Thure Cannon.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott speaks during a press conference related to his re-election campaign Tuesday afternoon at 3S Services Pipeline in Midland. (Eli Hartman/Odessa American)

Abbott thanked the organizations for their endorsements.

“This is the roundhouse of the energy sector of the entire state of Texas,” Abbott said. “These associations and their members fuel the state of Texas and fuel the United States of America. I thank them for what they do every day to provide and help make Texas a better state.”

Abbott was first elected governor in 2014, defeating Wendy Davis before getting reelected in 2018 over Lupe Valdez.

He is currently trying to seek the Republican nomination with Allen West, Donald Huffines and Daniel Harrison also running.

Democrat Beto O’Rourke is seeking his party’s nomination as the Democrats attempt win the Texas governor’s race for the first time since 1990.

“In large part, because of what these organizations and their members do, Texas consistently ranks the number one state in almost every business category,” Abbott said. “We are the number one state of affordable production of oil and gas. Texas has ranked number one for doing business ever since I became governor. Texas has been the number one state for the most economic expansion of any other state.”

Texas Governor Greg Abbott, right, speaks during a press conference related to his re-election campaign Tuesday afternoon at 3S Services Pipeline in Midland. (Eli Hartman/Odessa American)

Towards the end of the event, the governor took a few questions from the media including possible concerns with the upcoming winter storm expected this week with snow expected Thursday.

It has been a year since the 2021 winter storm knocked power out all across the state.

Abbott says the state is more prepared this year, saying there is “about 15 percent more capacity than last year.”

“In addition to that, we have more power reserves than we had last year,” Abbott said. “We also have required winterization of all power generation facilities. 99 percent of all power generation facilities in the state of Texas have passed inspections to make sure that those power producers will be reliable and be able to generate power. … There are more natural gas facilities that are designated as critical infrastructure this year to ensure the ongoing operation. Amazingly last year, ERCOT actually shut down power to natural gas facilities in regions across the entire state. That hindered our ability to get natural gas from those entities. Last winter, only 60 facilities were designated as critical infrastructure. Today, more than 1,500 are designated as critical infrastructure. That means there will be no power shut downs to those facilities, many that are oil and gas sectors.”

Wednesday’s high will be 48 with a low of 23 with snow expected as the temperatures begin to plummet. Thursday’s temperature will be even colder with a high of 27 and a low of 16.

Friday is expecting sunny skies but only a high of 36 with a low of 10, Saturday and Sunday are expected to be the same.

“The grid is expected to hit peak demand in the early morning hours on Friday,” Abbott said. “It was projected that at that peak demand time, there will be a surplus of power of about 13,000 megawatts of power. That’s a large amount of power. Also, there are now alternative sources of power at the power generators that if they were to run out of natural gas, they’ll have other sources of natural power to generate electricity.”