Lummis Slams BLM’s Onerous New Oil and Gas Leasing Regulations

April 12, 2024

Washington, D.C.— Senate Western Caucus Chair Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) issued the following statement after the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released its newest oil and gas leasing regulations. The rule imposes higher fees and royalties, severely limits the number of parcels offered at lease sales and drastically raises bonding requirements.

“President Biden continues to wage war on domestic energy and has created untenable rules that make it nearly impossible to produce energy on federal lands. While this administration continues to eliminate American energy jobs and erode our energy independence, I will continue fighting for the West’s energy industry by cutting red tape to unleash American energy,” said Lummis.

Today, the BLM finalized the Fluid Mineral Leases and Leasing Process rule that drastically increases royalties, rates, minimum bids and costs for oil and gas producers on federal lands. Its substantial increases to bonding for producers makes it even more difficult for small producers, a provision Republicans successfully removed from Democrats’ so-called Inflation Reduction Act under the Byrd rule. Despite a 50-50 vote in the Senate to reject these bad policies, the BLM elected to increase bonds, raising the minimum lease bond amount from $10,000 per well to $150,000 per well. Additionally, the minimum statewide bond has soared to $500,000 from $25,000 and companies now must bid a minimum of $10/acre at auction compared to the original $2/acre requirement.