DOI Provides Offshore Leasing Program Update

DOI Provides Offshore Leasing Program Update
The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) has posted an update.

The Department of the Interior (DOI) will release the proposed program, the next step in the five-year offshore energy planning process, by June 30, 2022.

That’s what Deb Haaland, the secretary of the interior, confirmed during testimony before a recent U.S Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, the DOI revealed. In a statement posted on its website, the DOI highlighted that the program would be released “despite delays in implementation from the previous administration”.

In the statement, the DOI also noted that a proposed program is not a decision to issue specific leases or to authorize any drilling or development.

“The previous administration stopped work on the new five-year plan in 2018, so there has been a lot to do to catch up,” Haaland said in a DOI statement.

“Varying, conflicting litigation has also been a factor. As we take this next step, we will follow the science and the law, as we always do. This requires a robust and transparent review process that includes input from states, the public and Tribes to inform our decision-making,” Haaland added.

“We take this responsibility seriously without any pre-judgment of the outcome,” Haaland continued.

Following Haaland’s confirmation, National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) President Erik Milito said, “Interior has had 16 months to fulfill its statutory obligation to develop and maintain an offshore oil and gas leasing program and it has failed”.

“No other administration has failed in this way. Until now, every administration, whether Democrat or Republican, has recognized the critical, strategic advantages of continued U.S. offshore oil and gas production that are achieved through an uninterrupted national leasing program,” Milito added in a statement sent to Rigzone.

“The intentional obstruction and delays in U.S. energy development that we are now witnessing have devastating consequences for Americans at the gas pump, our national security, global geopolitics, our near- and long-term energy security, and high-paying jobs across the country,” he continued.

Rigzone asked the DOI if it had any comment on Milito’s statement. Responding to the question, the DOI outlined that it had nothing to add beyond its latest proposed program update.

To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com


What do you think? We’d love to hear from you, join the conversation on the Rigzone Energy Network.

The Rigzone Energy Network is a new social experience created for you and all energy professionals to Speak Up about our industry, share knowledge, connect with peers and industry insiders and engage in a professional community that will empower your career in energy.