After much controversy, including a lawsuit from the American Petroleum Institute (API), Chevron and the State of Louisiana, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has reset an oil and gas lease sale no later than Nov. 8.
Lease Sale 261 in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM) Outer Continental Shelf had been scheduled for Sept. 27. A Sept. 25 decision by the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans ordered the sale to proceed, adding “no extension will be granted.”
BOEM plans to hold Lease Sale 261 to comply with the appellate court ruling. A revised final notice of sale will be issued in the coming days.
“The order allows time for a more orderly lease sale process,” BOEM said in a Sept. 26 press release.
The sale was postponed after the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans earlier granted a request by the Interior Department to stay part of an order issued by a federal judge, Reuters reported. The order gave the government until the end of September to hold an auction, which includes 6 million acres more than it had planned to offer. The decision was the latest development in a legal battle over the federal protection of an endangered species of whale.
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