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Congressman Tom Cole

Representing the 4th District of Oklahoma

Natural Resources

As a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, I take protection of our natural resources very seriously. I believe that we must maintain programs to manage our resources wisely, while working with landowners to ensure that their property rights are protected.

For Oklahomans, drought and water scarcity is part of our history. Investments in water infrastructure are critical to ensuring the availability and affordability of this critical resource. Doing so will ensure that our water resources in Oklahoma are managed in a way to meet both our present needs and those of the many generations to come.

More on Natural Resources

April 29, 2015 Press Release
Washington, DC - Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) announced that the U.S. House of Representatives passed his legislation directing the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study on the feasibility of designating the Chief Standing Bear National Historic Trail (H.R. 984).
September 11, 2014 Press Release
Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) led the Oklahoma congressional delegation Wednesday in sending a letter to U.S. Department of Interior Sec. Sally Jewell to urge the Department’s Office of Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM) to discontinue its attempt to resolve programmatic issues with the Oklahoma Department of Mines with "secrecy agreements.”
October 23, 2013 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the United States House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) of 2013.

June 13, 2013 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the Supreme Court of the United States upheld Oklahoma water rights in the case, Tarrant Regional Water District v. Herrmann. This case challenged the terms of the Red River Compact of 1978, a congressionally sanctioned agreement allocating water rights in the Red River Basin shared by Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana.

June 13, 2013 News Stories

Norman Transcript - Staff Report

Congressman Tom Cole, R- Moore, said he is pleased with the ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States that upheld Oklahoma water rights in the case, Tarrant Regional Water District v. Herrmann.

This case challenged the terms of the Red River Compact of 1978, a congressionally sanctioned agreement allocating water rights in the Red River Basin shared by Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana.

May 31, 2013 News Stories

Ada News - Eric Swanson

Environmental Protection Agency officials have assured U.S. Rep. Tom Cole that Robert S. Kerr Environmental Research Center will have a new permanent director by September, Cole said Thursday.

Cole said Congress should not get involved in personnel issues at the EPA, but lawmakers have a forum for seeking information from agency officials. He added that he recently discussed the situation at Kerr Lab with officials who pledged to fill the director’s job this fall.

January 1, 2013 News Stories

Tulsa World - The Associated Press

Congress has passed legislation that may help boost the water supply in Lake Thunderbird.

The legislation was sponsored by U.S. Rep. Tom Cole and was carried in the Senate by U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe. The resolution allows the Central Oklahoma Master Conservancy District to tap into the Atoka line that runs near Lake Thunderbird. The Norman Transcript reports that this raw water source can be used to help raise water levels in Lake Thunderbird during drought conditions.

December 31, 2012 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Congressman Tom Cole (R-OK-4) today applauded the Senate passage of H.R. 3263, the Lake Thunderbird Efficient Use Act. This measure grants the Central Oklahoma Master Conservancy District (COMC) authority to import and store non-project water into Lake Thunderbird in order to firm up municipal and industrial water supplies for cities including Norman, Midwest City, and Del City.  

June 5, 2012 Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the House passed H.R. 3263 - Lake Thunderbird Efficient Use Act, a bill he authored to allow Lake Thunderbird to acquire and store water from outside the Bureau of Reclamation system. Any cost associated with this action would be paid for by the Central Oklahoma Master Conservancy District.  The legislation has also been passed out of committee in the Senate. 

February 29, 2012 Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the House Committee on Natural Resources favorably reported H.R. 3263, the Lake Thunderbird Efficient Use Act:

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