Block, Molly <>

2:16 PM (1 hour ago)
to Elise

Fourth Estate –

With just the click of a mouse, we can soon watch offshore lease sales from the comfort of our own homes. Instead of shelling out cash for a last-minute flight and schlepping out to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the livestream format expands access to anyone with access to a computer. Anyone, anywhere can watch.

Last week the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced it will hold its first ever live-broadcast for an offshore oil and gas lease sale over the internet. While this change follows the passage of H.R. 5577, the “Innovation in Offshore Leasing Act,” out of the Natural Resources Committee, there are some important distinctions.


More than live-broadcasting, the bipartisan bill moves offshore lease sales online – something that has never been done by BOEM. This concept is not new though. The Bureau of Land Management is holding an online-only oil and gas lease sale for parcels of land in Kentucky and Mississippi in September. Online vendors already work with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and multiple states including Texas, North Dakota, Colorado, Utah, New Mexico and Wyoming.


H.R. 5577 at its core is about greater public access and greater transparency in government. There are no changes to lease requirements or physical restrictions in the bill introduced by Reps. Garret Graves (R-LA) and Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), it simply allows the Secretary of the Interior to conduct internet-based oil and natural gas lease sales. This straightforward change will bring greater efficiency and competition for our offshore energy resources. Using the internet ensures the overall process will be fully transparent and readily available for the public to view.


Livestreaming is just the beginning. Moving leases online will be the real champion for transparency and access.

We’re not sure where you’ll be watching the August 24 sale – the possibilities are endless – but we’ll be watching from Longworth House Office Building, unfortunately without a beignet in hand.

Molly Block

Deputy Press Secretary

House Committee on Natural Resources

1328 Longworth House Office Building

(202) 226-9019

If Alaska”s governor succeeds in having his appointees on the Alaska Permanent Fund board provide policy support for investing Permanent Fund savings into a risky, financially unproven Alaska gas pipeline/LNG project when LNG prices languish at a third the threshold, economically feasible, we predict Alaska’s entire constituency will rise up to call this self-anointed gasline guru socialist leaning governor out of his ever loving mind!   -dh

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