Posted June 24, 2009
Yesterday, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) suspended the sale of all 31 oil and natural gas drilling tracts in Utah that had been purchased earlier in the day during a regularly scheduled lease sale, after the bureau accepted last-minute protests about the sale from two environmental groups. BLM has put all the leases on hold to conduct an environmental assessment.
While we appreciate the need to address protests to proposed lease sales, the deviation from set procedures by accepting late protests does not promote confidence that the Obama administration is committed to an orderly and predictable leasing process that allows for development of energy resources that belong to the American people.
This apparent policy of delay--in the face of public sentiment that favors greater access to domestic oil and natural gas resources--serves as a disincentive to companies willing to spend billions of dollars in America to hire American workers to produce American fuel for the American consumer.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.