IPAA Comments for the 2023-2028 National Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Proposed ProgramLetters and Comments Oct 4, 2022
The Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) appreciates the opportunity to comment on the Interior Department’s 2023-2028 “Proposed Program” for the Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program (National OCS Program). IPAA is the national trade association representing the thousands of independent crude oil and natural gas explorers and producers in the United States. Our members operate both onshore on federal, state, and private lands as well as offshore in the OCS and Alaska. IPAA also operates in close cooperation with forty-four unaffiliated independent national, state, and regional associations, which together represent thousands of royalty owners and the companies that provide services and supplies to the domestic industry. IPAA is dedicated to ensuring a strong and viable domestic oil and natural gas industry, recognizing that an adequate and secure supply of energy developed in an environmentally responsible manner is essential to the national economy.
On Friday, July 1, 2022, the Interior Department released its 2023-2028 “Proposed Program” for the Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program (National OCS Program). While the release of the Proposed Program was welcome after many months of delay, our nation is still left in the unfortunate position of facing a substantial gap between National OCS Programs for the first time since issuing programs were required in the early 1980s.
Perhaps the most concerning part of the Proposed Program is the fact that the proposal leaves open the possibility of scheduling no lease sales from 2023 to 2028. Simply put, a National OCS Program devoid of lease sales would be a significant blow for the country’s energy future and security needs. In addition, scheduling no lease sales would not satisfy the requirements of the OCS Lands Act. At a time when the nation is suffering from skyrocketing energy prices and is increasingly turning to foreign nations to supply our energy needs, scheduling zero offshore lease sales for the next five years would be a devastating blow to the U.S. energy industry and do irreparable harm…