Guest “we told you so” by David Middleton
This is not related to the currently existing 60-day procedural mortality.
While this is based on anonymous sources, I heard rumors about something worse on Friday, and it is what we expected … (For readers who don’t know, I’m a petroleum geologist / geophysicist and have worked the federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico since 1988).
Biden is preparing to terminate new state oil and coal leases
By JENNIFER A. DLOUHY AND ARI NATTER on January 21, 2021
WASHINGTON (Bloomberg) – President Joe Biden stands ready to suspend oil and gas lease sales to state which four people familiar with account for about a tenth of U.S. shipments.
The moratorium, which would also freeze coal leasing, is set to be unveiled next week, along with a number of other climate policies, according to people who have asked anonymity to discuss plans not yet public. The moratorium is separate from a 60-day lease and a break ordered on Wednesday, two people said.
The move would block sales of new mining and drilling rights to approximately 700 million acres of the state. It could also block offshore oil and gas leasing, though details are still being developed, some of the people said.
White House and Home Office spokespersons who lease states overseas declined to comment.
Oil industry leaders and western US politicians have warned that taking the move could harm some local economies where drilling and mining are thriving – while crippling US power generation to the detriment of American consumers. The Western Energy Alliance, which campaigned against Obama-era oil drilling rules, has vowed to go to court immediately to challenge a leasing ban.
“Preventing American companies from accessing our country’s natural resources is bad for American jobs, bad for national budgets, and bad for national security. It also raises serious legal concerns, ”said Anne Bradbury, executive director of the American Exploration and Production Council.
According to the Energy Information Administration, states and waters together accounted for 22% of total US oil production and 12% of US natural gas production in 2019. According to the Bureau of Land Management, onshore federal states supply around 8% of the national oil and 9% of the natural gas. Data for 2020 are not yet available.
Oil industry advocates argue that well blockages don’t add anything to emissions – just move crude oil production elsewhere. “The world will need natural gas and oil for a long time to come in any scenario,” said Dan Naatz, senior vice president, Independent Petroleum Association of America. “A leasing ban will only deliver this production to Saudi Arabia and Russia, where there are far less stringent environmental controls.”
Such a move, while idiotic, could actually be legal and would be far less harmful than a totally illegal refusal to approve permits for existing leases. It would simply result in the US importing about 1 million more barrels a day from Saudi Arabia, Russia and Iran by the end of this decade.
In addition to the up to 70,000 jobs Biden killed on the day he was transferred to office, about 500,000 jobs would be lost.
Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) confronted Transportation Secretary candidate Pete Buttigieg about the Keystone XL decision Thursday morning during the Buttigieg hearing. If the administration was serious about infrastructure, Cruz asked why an infrastructure project with “good, paid union jobs” was killed.
When Buttigieg said the idea was that “net” jobs would be created in more climate-friendly industries, Cruz replied that this was little comfort for the laid-off Keystone XL employees: “For these employees, the answer is someone else you get a job ? “