CASPER, Wyo. — The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced proposed revisions to oil and gas production and reporting regulation rules on Wednesday, July 29.
Oil and gas production on federal lands generated about $4.23 billion in federal royalties in fiscal year 2019, according to the BLM. Production on tribal lands generated about $1.14 billion in royalties which are distributed to tribes “and shared with the states in which those revenues are generated.”
The BLM says their proposed rule changes “are necessary because vast royalties are generated from smaller, local operations that were disproportionately impacted by the previous regulations.”
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“These proposed enhancements streamline regulations to ensure that our oversight of energy production on America’s public lands is consistent and fair,” Deputy Secretary of the Interior Kate MacGregor said in the BLM’s release.
The BLM adds: “The proposed rule would revise three regulations to ensure proper handling of oil and gas production, which is essential for accurate measurement, proper reporting and overall production accountability. Taken together, the proposed new rules would remove or modify unnecessarily complex and burdensome requirements, address logistical issues and eliminate inconsistencies.”
“For example, the proposed rule reduces requirements for water-draining operations which are duplicative of existing seal requirements.”
The BLM says the changes would also reduce “duplicative and extensive record keeping requirements. Further, the proposals increase grandfathering of measurement equipment and inspection frequency, where accuracy and performance has already been verified.”
“Based upon that review, the BLM found that the revisions would streamline regulations for oil and gas operators working on Federal and Indian lands,” the BLM said.
The BLM said they will publish the proposed new regulations in the “Federal Register.” Once the proposed regulations are published, a 60-day public comment period will open.
“The BLM will notify the public and stakeholders when the regulations publish, as well as publicizing the opening and closing dates of the comment period and instructions on how to comment,” the BLM said. “Before finalizing any regulations, the BLM will review and respond to substantive public comments and may use any new information gathered to help guide the development of the revisions.”
This article originally appeared on Oil City News. Used with permission.