Energy and mineral production on federal and tribal land generated $7.1 billion in disbursements in fiscal-year 2017, $1 billion more than the previous year, the U.S. Interior Department said on Nov. 30.
Interior attributed the increase in disbursements to a larger number of lease sales totaling higher acreage, efforts to streamline permitting and reduce regulatory burdens, and higher oil and gas prices experienced during the year.
The Interior's Office of Natural Resources Revenue disbursed $1.44 billion to five western states, $676 million to tribal governments and individual mineral rights owners and $950 million to the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which supports state and local parks.
"As the administration continues to cut red tape and end the overregulation of responsible energy development, we will be able to direct more funds to local communities and create more good-paying American jobs,” Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said.
Following a hurricane-like second quarter, the good news is the third quarter has arrived, and the oil and gas industry is at work cleaning up debris and trying to find a sense of normalcy. The questions are in what order, and will the calm winds last?
Devon Energy had been actively shopping the Permian Basin assets, and others in the Rockies, the past several months.
Oil major Exxon Mobil said Jan. 31 it would create three new separate E&P companies, effective April 1, in an effort to double its profit by 2025.