The United States Congress ratified the Interstate Compact to Conserve Oil and Gas, also known as the Interstate Oil Compact, in 1935 after six states endorsed it, creating the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC). The IOGCC facilitates states in the sharing of technology, information, and regulatory methods. Initially, the primary focus of the Commission was the conservation of oil and natural gas and the minimization of physical waste; however, its focus eventually expanded to include the protection of human and environmental health from the harmful effects of these energy sources.
The Interstate Oil Compact ensured that the IOGCC did not limit production, with the intent to influence prices, or allocate production among members. The Compact regulates on a voluntary basis with no enforcement powers. As of February 2005, the IOGCC consisted of over 30 member states and seven associated states that produce most of the nation's domestic oil and natural gas. The Commission meets quarterly and includes international representatives, environmentalists, and industries in an attempt to make sound regulatory decisions.