Biden Admin Issues 30+ Drilling Permits

Biden Admin Issues 30+ Drilling Permits
The Biden administration has issued at least 31 new drilling permits authorizing operations on federal land and coastal waters.

(Bloomberg) -- The Biden administration has issued at least 31 new drilling permits authorizing operations on federal land and coastal waters, despite an order putting political appointees in charge of the decisions.

The move signals those drilling authorizations are continuing to flow, despite President Joe Biden’s plan to pause oil and gas leasing -- and a Jan. 20 order temporarily putting decisions about oil and gas permits, mining operations, hiring and other matters in the hands of top Interior Department officials.

The order provoked alarm across the oil industry, as energy companies worried they wouldn’t get approval to drill new wells or swift approval to amend permits for ongoing drilling operations.

So far, there’s no sign of that blockade.

Offshore, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement has issued 22 drilling permits to eight companies since Jan. 20, when President Joe Biden was inaugurated. Recipients have included BP Exploration and Production Inc., Arena Offshore, Shell Offshore Inc. and a BHP Billiton Petroleum subsidiary, according to a Bloomberg News review of an Interior Department database.

The offshore approvals, for wells in the Gulf of Mexico, have been issued on a steady basis since Biden’s inauguration, including this week.

Onshore, the Bureau of Land Management issued nine permits for wells in Montana, New Mexico and Wyoming on Jan. 20 and Jan. 21, according to a review of a separate database by the watchdog group Accountable.US. The companies that received the authorizations were Jonah Energy LLC, Burlington Resources Oil & Gas Co. LP and Legacy Reserves Operating LP.

The Interior Department said in a statement that permits for valid, existing leases “are continuing to be reviewed and approved.”

The agency has maintained that the order, which is set to expire March 20, does not equate to a drilling permit freeze and does not apply to tribal lands.

© 2021 Bloomberg L.P.


Generated by readers, the comments included herein do not reflect the views and opinions of Rigzone. All comments are subject to editorial review. Off-topic, inappropriate or insulting comments will be removed.

Frances M Macdonald  |  January 29, 2021
Permits take time to be authorized. I would like more information as to when each these permits were applied for , to what government body ( federal? state? ) and the ability to legally pivot to cancel these permits On the surface it looks disappointing but I expect there is more to this story
Judith Rackham  |  January 28, 2021
Having read that data, I have come to realize that I must keep myself informed. I have tended to know the headlines well and thus miss many details (it would seem). It behaves all of us to dig deeper.
Ronald Gifford  |  January 28, 2021
So Biden has now figured how to blackmail oil drillers for permits?

Most Popular Articles