As per the announcement of The Department of Interior on Friday, the sale of gas and oil leases will be resuming next week. The Bureau of Land Management will issue the final environment examination and sale notices from Monday for upcoming gas and oil projects. BLM stated that the lease would comprise roughly 173 parcels for 144,000 acres, accounting for 80 percent less than the original acreage.
NEW: Biden’s @Interior Department announces it will officially restart onshore oil and gas leases on federal lands. On Monday, @BLMNational will issue notices for upcoming sales that include “a first-ever increase in the royalty rate to 18.75 percent.”
— Joshua Siegel (@SiegelScribe) April 15, 2022
Biden administration took this step to counter increasing gasoline prices and inflation; both can be dangerous for the current political environment. Since the day when Biden took charge as President, he discouraged such leases and emphasized ending them.
On the other hand, the administration held the narrative that it was looking for opportunities to reopen the drilling responsibly. A statement from Interior Secretary Deb Haaland highlighted the importance of public lands and waters, and managing both of them indicates everything that they value as a nation.
Concerns of the American Petroleum Institute
The State Department further added that the Bureau of Land Management evaluated likely available and appropriate acreage in the states of New Mexico, Wyoming, Nevada, Colorado, Oklahoma, Alabama, Montana, Utah, and North Dakota. In addition, during his first week in office, the U.S. president signed an executive order to suspend temporarily new oil & gas leases on offshore waters and public lands for fracking and drilling.
Regarding the decision, the American Petroleum Institute (API) expressed concern to Fox News over whether the move will add new barricades to increase energy production. Furthermore, the Interior Department said Friday that the recent leasing would come with an 18.75% royalty rate, more than the last rate of 12.5 that critics complained was far less than what energy firms pay to drill on most state lands.