The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today joined the American Petroleum Institute and several other energy trade groups representing all sectors of the U.S. natural gas and oil industry in calling on the Biden administration to support U.S. energy security by finalizing a robust program for federal offshore leasing. In a letter to President Biden, the energy trade groups urged the administration to finalize a program that includes the maximum number of lease sales and begin the pre-leasing work required to start holding sales in 2024. The letter follows a recent Stipulated Stay agreement that imposed baseless restrictions on an estimated 11 million acres in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, leaving the offshore energy industry in an extended period of uncertainty.
“The world needs American energy leadership, but that leadership requires supportive energy policies from Washington,” the letter states. “Without the certainty and predictability provided by a robust five-year leasing program, including yearly lease sales to obtain new acres, companies may explore opportunities elsewhere. Their decisions and the resulting economic, energy, and environmental benefits will be realized elsewhere, not in the U.S.”
In addition to highlighting the critical role that offshore production plays in American energy security, local economies in the Gulf coast and for conservation programs, the trades also reiterated the importance of offshore production in helping the Biden administration achieve its climate goals, citing a recent study on global oil production and emissions by ICF that found that U.S. Gulf of Mexico production has a carbon intensity 46% lower than production in other parts of the world.
“The success of emerging offshore energy segments, which are prioritized by the Biden Administration, is closely intertwined with the long-term success of the domestic offshore oil and gas sector,” the letter stated. “Many companies operating in offshore energy, with roots in the oil and gas industry, are actively engaged in finding solutions, expanding, and building new energy segments like offshore wind and carbon capture and storage (CCS). However, the lack of a new offshore oil and gas leasing program introduces uncertainty that will inevitably hinder companies' ability to invest in these promising energy avenues.” Signatories of the letter include:
- American Petroleum Institute
- Consumer Energy Alliance
- Louisiana Mid Continent Oil and Gas Association
- National Ocean Industries Association
- American Chemistry Council
- American Exploration & Production Council
- EnerGeo Alliance
- Energy Workforce & Technology Council
- Gulf Economic Survival Team
- Independent Petroleum Association of America
- International Association of Drilling Contractors
- Louisiana Oil & Gas Association
- Louisiana Association of Business and Industry
- Manufacture Alabama
- Southeast Oil & Gas Association
- Texas Oil and Gas Association
- U.S. Oil & Gas Association
To view the letter, click here.