Oil and Gas Leasing Reforms Will Benefit Wildlife, Public Lands, American Taxpayers

DENVER — The House Natural Resources Committee’s proposed Build Back Better Act has important provisions that will raise revenue while reforming the broken federal oil and gas system with common-sense reforms. The National Wildlife Federation heralded Chairman Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) as an essential facet of President Joe Biden and Congress’ historic infrastructure plan. 

“For too long, Americans have been short-changed because the government has not charged oil and gas companies their fair share for drilling our publicly-owned resources. This bill would finally fix that, raising long-overdue revenue for the American taxpayer," said Mary Greene, public lands attorney for the National Wildlife Federation. "The bill also updates decades old bonding rates, which could save future generations billions of dollars."

The reforms put forth by the House Natural Resources Committee include increasing royalty rates, bonding rates, minimum bids, rental rates, and leasing fees. It would also eliminate noncompetitive leasing, which had allowed speculators to pay as little as $1.50 an acre for land that had little or no potential for energy development. 

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