U.S Oil And Gas Industry Slams Biden's New 5-year Program For Federal Offshore Leasing, Says It Poses Economic, National Security

by India Infrahub - Jul 2, 2022 10:49 AM +05:30 IST
U.S Oil And Gas Industry Slams Biden's New 5-year Program For Federal Offshore Leasing, Says It Poses  Economic, National SecurityBOEM-OPA Gulf Of Mexico
Snapshot
  • The Biden administration in U.S on Friday (Jul 1) unveiled a five-year offshore oil and gas drilling development plan on Friday that proposes block all new drilling in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans within U.S. waters, but would allow potentially 11 new lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and the south coast of Alaska.

    Around 95% of U.S. offshore oil production and 71% of offshore natural gas production occurs in the Gulf of Mexico. According to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, the Gulf of Mexico accounts for 15% of all U.S. oil production.

The Biden administration in the U.S on Friday (Jul 1) unveiled a five-year offshore oil and gas drilling development plan on Friday that proposes to block all new drilling in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans within U.S. waters but would allow potentially 11 new lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and the south coast of Alaska.

During the run-up to the presidential election, Biden had pledged to shut down drilling for fuels on federally owned territory if voted to power. In Jan 2022, Biden signed an executive order in January pausing new oil and gas leasing on federal lands and waters, pending an analysis of their impact. However, many states in the U.S went to court challenging the order.

"From Day One, President Biden and I have made clear our commitment to transition to a clean energy economy." Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said in a statement. The Department of Interior has invited the public to comment on the program.

"Today, we put forward an opportunity for the American people to consider and provide input on the future of offshore oil and gas leasing. The time for the public to weigh in on our future is now." he added.

The oil and gas industry, which has been urging the administration to increase offshore drilling in an effort to lower gas prices at the pump, criticised the the Department of Interior's proposed 5-year program for federal offshore leasing.

"At a time when Americans are facing record high energy costs and the world is seeking American energy leadership, tonight's announcement leaves open the possibility of no new offshore lease sales, the continuation of a policy that has gone on for far too long." the American Petroleum Institute (API) said in a statement.

"Because of their failure to act, the U.S. is now in the unprecedented position of having a substantial gap between programs for the first time since this process began in the early 1980s, leaving U.S. producers at a significant disadvantage on the global stage and putting our economic and national security at risk." API statement added.

Environmental groups on Friday condemned the administration for proposing limited new lease sales instead of announcing a ban on all new drilling. Several groups have alleged that the environmental analysis behind the auction is flawed and violated federal law.

Around 95% of U.S. offshore oil production and 71% of offshore natural gas production occurs in the Gulf of Mexico. According to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, the Gulf of Mexico accounts for 15% of all U.S. oil production.

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