Biden Reinstates Trump’s Plan for Largest Oil and Gas Lease Sale in U.S History

Joe Biden has just reinstated President Donald Trump’s plan for the largest oil and gas lease sale in U.S. history.

According to Fox Business, “Biden and his team are ‘essentially steamrolling the need for environmental review, by signing the Inflation Reduction Act into law on Tuesday.’”

Lease Sale 257 was originally planned by the Trump administration and will be the largest offshore oil and gas lease sale in U.S. history.

However, it was held up in the courts.

While the Democrats’ “Inflation Reduction Act” includes several green energy provisions opposed by the fossil fuel industry, the bill also orders the Department of the Interior (DOI) to take a series of steps to boost fossil fuel production on federal lands and waters, according to Fox Business

The legislation specifically requires the DOI to reinstate Lease Sale 257, a massive offshore oil and gas sale spanning 80.8 million acres across the Gulf of Mexico, within 30 days of enactment.

“There should be no questions about the issuance of leases from Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 257,” National Ocean Industries Association President Erik Milito said.

“The legislation is clear and mandatory.

“Congress has acted, the leases must be issued, and the lawsuit must be dismissed.”

From The Washington Post on November 17, 2021:

During his first week in office, Biden signed an executive order instructing the Interior to pause all new lease sales on public lands and waters while it reviewed how to adjust the program.

But in June, a federal judge in Louisiana issued a preliminary injunction to block the pause. U.S. District Judge Terry A. Doughty, a Trump appointee, found the Interior could not stop leasing without congressional approval.

At a Monday briefing, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the administration was “required to comply with the injunction,” even as the Justice Department asks an appeals court to overturn the judge’s order. 

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“It’s a legal case and legal process, but it’s important for advocates and other people out there who are following this to understand that it’s not aligned with our view, the president’s policies, or the executive order that he signed,” Psaki said.

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By David Hawkins

David Hawkins is a writer who specializes in political commentary and world affairs. He's been writing professionally since 2014.

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