IPAA Welcomes Extension of Successful BLM Energy Permitting Program

IPAA Welcomes Extension of Successful BLM Energy Permitting Program

Washington, D.C. – The Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) welcomed President Barack Obama’s signature on bipartisan legislation that includes a provision to reauthorize a successful pilot program, allowing the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to address a backlog of drilling permit applications and reduce permit delays for new oil and natural gas production on federal lands.

“Permitting is a critical issue for America’s independent producers, as paperwork delays can put American jobs, affordable and reliable energy, and economic growth on hold,” said IPAA President and CEO Barry Russell. “This is a compromise solution that reforms and extends funding for energy permitting projects that would otherwise run out next year. The success of continuing this program is thanks in no small part to a bipartisan, bicameral legislative effort and the support of the Obama Administration. American families around the nation will benefit from a streamlined permitting process by the way of increased American-made energy, greater energy security, and millions of dollars in additional revenue sent to the United States Treasury. Achieving this goal is proof that things can actually get accomplished in Washington, D.C. when all sides work together. IPAA thanks Congress for taking action on behalf of America’s independent oil and gas producers – American small business job creators – and we look forward to continuing to achieve commonsense, job-creating solutions in the 114th Congress.”

IPAA Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Political Affairs Dan Naatz added, “IPAA commends Senators Tom Udall (D-NM) and John Barrasso (R-WY) and Congressman Rob Bishop (R-UT) for championing the BLM Permit Processing Improvement Act (S. 2440). We would also like to thank House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (R-WA), Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and their staffs for their leadership to secure final passage of S. 2440 as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015, which was signed by the president on Friday.”

Reauthorizing the BLM pilot office program has been one of IPAA’s highest priorities in 2014.  Below is a list of IPAA-led initiatives regarding the BLM pilot project over the past year:

January:

  • Worked with Congressman Rob Bishop’s (R-UT) and various senators offices to formulate ideas on how to best approach program reauthorization

February:

  • Praised efforts of joint, bipartisan letter from Rep. Rob Bishop and Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) to the Secretary of the Interior requesting reauthorization of the BLM pilot office program

March:

  • Formed a working group with Western Energy Alliance, US Oil & Gas Association, American Petroleum Institute, and interested stakeholders to discuss what industry would like to see in a program reauthorization bill

March to June:

  • Held educational meetings with Senator Udall and Congressman Bishop’s offices on the importance of introducing legislation

June:

July:

  • Joined American Petroleum Institute, US Oil & Gas Association, and Western Energy Alliance in sending a letter to Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources Chairman Mary Landrieu (D-LA) expressing support for S. 2440 and urging consideration
  • Submitted testimony for the record in support of S. 2440 for the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee oversight hearing on “Breaking the Logjam at BLM: Examining Ways to More Efficiently Process Permits for Energy Production on Federal Lands”

September:

  • S. 2440 passes out of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee by unanimous consent
  • Commended the U.S. Senate for acting swiftly and passing S. 2440 by unanimous consent
  • Organized numerous meetings, in association with American Petroleum Institute and Western Energy Alliance, with House Leadership, Members, and staff on the House Natural Resources and Appropriations Committees urging passage of S. 2440

November:

  • Joined seven energy trade groups on a letter to House Speaker John Boehner urging the House of Representatives to consider S. 2440, the BLM Permit Processing Improvement Act of 2014

December:

  • Applauded the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015, which included language to reauthorize the BLM pilot office program
  • Commended the U.S. Senate for passing the House-passed National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015, which included language to reauthorize the BLM pilot office program
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