WASHINGTON, D.C. – The onshore oil and gas leasing reforms announced by the Department of Interior will prioritize leasing on lands near existing energy development, exclude lands that contain important wildlife habitat, and will increase royalty rates so that energy companies pay their fair share to lease our nation’s public lands.
“We are heartened that the Biden Administration’s onshore leasing reforms incorporate many of the leasing reforms that we have been seeking to place more value on the wildlife, water, and habitat of our public lands. Responsible energy development means leasing lands near existing development and away from critical wildlife habitat. In addition, it’s time to charge energy companies market rates for the privilege of leasing our lands,” said Abby Tinsley, associate vice president for policy and government affairs at the National Wildlife Federation. “Now the administration must take the next step and adopt permanent rules to implement all of the reforms put forth in its report last fall, including ending the practice of leasing on low potential lands, charging fair market prices, and increasing bonding rates so energy companies—not American taxpayers – pay for the cleanup after the lands have been developed.”
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