President Obama appointed Dr. Alfredo "Al" Armendariz, an Associate Professor of environmental and civil engineering at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and self-proclaimed activist, to the position of EPA Region 6 Administrator. Dr. Armendariz will implement the agency's activities in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico, promoting state and local environmental protection efforts that include a growing interest in the natural gas production and distribution industry. Dr. Armendariz has publicly voiced his concerns that the oil and gas production industry around Fort Worth is a "major contributor to local and global air pollution problems." Accordingly, he believes it is "an absolute no-brainer" that EPA should be addressing methane emissions escaping from natural gas compressors and storage tanks as fugitive emissions.