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Following President Obama’s direction to hold annual oil and gas lease sales in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will hold its second oil and gas lease sale in the past year on Nov. 7 in Anchorage, Alaska.
The lease sale will include 400 tracts and cover approximately 4.5 million acres in the NPR-A and builds on the December 2011 NPR-A sale that made 283 tracts and three million acres available. BLM released the draft Determination of National Environmental Policy Act Adequacy document in support of the agency’s next planned oil and gas lease sale.
“The energy resources of the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska are essential to meeting our nation’s energy demands and will enhance domestic energy production and decrease dependency on foreign oil sources,” said Salazar. “The November sale is in line with the president’s direction to continue to expand domestic energy production, safely and responsibly. Since the president took office, domestic oil and gas production has increased each year with oil production higher than any time in eight years, and production of domestic natural gas at an all-time high.”
The BLM sought public input on tract nominations from lands in the NPR-A planning areas that are not currently leased or deferred from leasing and selected the tracts based on evaluation of comments received, natural resource information, resource potential, industry interest, and subsistence values. The comment period ran from May 15 through June 29.
The BLM will submit a notice of sale to the Federal Register to be published at least 30 days prior to the sale.