DENVER – The Biden Administration’s decision to resume oil and gas lease sales on federal lands highlights the need to reform our nation’s antiquated leasing system to protect taxpayers and safeguard wildlife, public lands, and communities.
“Although the Department of Interior must follow the law and consider requests to lease oil and gas on federal lands, the Biden Administration should ensure development does not come at the cost of wildlife, public lands, drinking water, and communities. The Interior Department should consider the social cost of carbon, the impact on wildlife and wildlife habitat, and the actual potential for energy development on any parcels of land it offers for lease,” said Mike Saccone, vice president of communications at the National Wildlife Federation. “Ultimately the administration must follow through with the reforms that it put forward in a report last fall that include modernizing the leasing system by ending the practice of leasing on low-potential lands, charging fair market rates, and increasing bonding rates so that energy companies — not American taxpayers — pay to reclaim land after oil and gas development.”
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