Christopher Collins, The Texas Observer

Christopher Collins

The Texas Observer

Abilene, TX, United States

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Past articles by Christopher:

Inside the Texas GOP’s Playbook to Kill the Public School Once and For All

This is merely the latest incarnation of a decades-old Republican playbook to discredit, defund, and ultimately destroy the Texas public education system. → Read More

Author Benjamin Sáenz Knows That Success Can Be 'As Fleeting As a Rainstorm in the Desert'

Set in his hometown, the El Paso author’s newest title is a thoughtful coming-of-age chronicle that follows the love story of two young, gay men. → Read More

Small Birds in Big Bend

Big Bend National Park in West Texas is the crown jewel of Texas' birding hotspots. → Read More

Strangest State: A UFO in Austin and a Rare Cloned Horse

An NFL star sees a UFO in Austin, Ted Nugent sells his guitars, and a rare cloned horse finds his home. → Read More

Texas Republicans Are Trying to Protect Trucking Companies from Lawsuits

Texas counts the highest number of big-rig wrecks in the U.S. and the number of truck fatalities has more than doubled since 2009. → Read More

Writer Rick Bass Fights for 20 Grizzly Bears

Rick Bass' new collection of essays is a Texas naturalist’s scrapbook of the Lone Star State. It’s also a deep look at the natural world. → Read More

One Researcher’s Quest to Quantify the Environmental Cost of Abandoned Oil Wells

In a study of West Texas oil wells, one researcher found abandoned wells were leaking almost 300 pounds of methane on average every year. → Read More

The quest to quantify the environmental cost of abandoned oil wells

New research shows unplugged wells could be quietly leaking millions of pounds of methane in West Texas. → Read More

Strangest State: A Mysterious Monolith and a Fat Cat

Notes from far-flung Texas. → Read More

ERCOT Is Refusing to Release Records On How it Prepared for the Winter Storm

The nonprofit corporation is asking Ken Paxton’s office for permission to ignore requests seeking information on the costliest winter storm in the state’s history. → Read More

Strangest State: Fashionable Critters and Creepy Heirlooms

Plus, a dog from Plano shot his owner in the leg. → Read More

Rural Voters Stepped on the Gas for Trump Across the Texas Oil Patch

Local leaders say it’s a sign that Biden’s messaging on environmental issues didn’t work in the oil patch—and that Trump’s did. → Read More

A West Texas Nursing Home Sent Its COVID-Positive Residents Elsewhere. Now Two of Them Are Dead.

Texas allows nursing homes to voluntarily accept COVID-positive patients from hospitals and other nursing homes. But there are no additional safeguards for the people sent there, and some of the facilities have a history of breaking rules. → Read More

Texas Nursing Home Residents Were Already at Risk. Then COVID-19 Hit.

A management company with a poor record of infection control is linked to COVID-19 outbreaks in nursing homes across Texas. → Read More

Strangest State: Bear With Us

News from El Paso, Abilene, Lubbock, the Rio Grande Valley, Bridge City, Shenendoah, and Galveston made it in our list of weird Texas happenings. → Read More

In Rural Counties, COVID-19 Cases are Likely Undercounted. Greg Abbott Wants to Reopen them Anyway.

More than 100 Texas counties—many with limited medical resources—will be able to reopen businesses to 50 percent capacity on Friday. → Read More

The COVID-19 Disaster Has Made a Mess of Texas’ Open Government Rules

Some government officials in Texas appear to be exploiting the pandemic as a way to hide public business from the public. → Read More

Off the Texas Gulf Coast, Tugboat Crews Are Stuck on Their Boats Without Pay

Bouchard Transportation, a massive shipping firm, hasn’t paid docking fees or worker salaries, leading to a rare quandary in U.S. waters. → Read More

With Coal Plants Offline, the Air in Central and East Texas Has Cleared

After three coal plants in rural parts of East and Central Texas shut down in late 2017, legal air pollution in the state fell by 150,000 tons. → Read More

This West Texas Town Is a Void for Reproductive Health

Rural hospitals are closing their maternity wards. Many Texans travel hundreds of miles just to access basic reproductive health care services. → Read More