Bureau of Land Management Reopens Public Comment, Announces New Date for Oil, Gas Lease Sale

(STL.News) – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has reopened the public comment period and changed the date for this summer’s proposed oil and gas lease sale due to the inclusion of additional parcels in the Ely District and the issuance of the new Greater Sage-Grouse Land Use Plan Amendment on March 15, 2019.

The lease sale, which was previously announced for June 11, 2019, will now be held on July 30, 2019. In keeping with the Administration’s goal of promoting American energy security, BLM proposes to offer 200 parcels, totaling approximately 389,334 acres located in Battle Mountain, Elko, and Ely Districts, at its July 30, 2019 quarterly oil and gas lease sale. This notice reopens a public comment period that will end on May 6, 2019 for the environmental documents associated with the sale. The BLM will hold the lease sale online at www.energynet.com.

This comment period complies with the terms of a Preliminary Injunction issued by the U.S. District Court of Idaho in W. Watersheds Project v. BLM (No. 1:18-cv-00187-REB), which required lengthier comment periods on environmental compliance documents associated with parcels that intersect Priority or General Habitat Management Areas for Greater Sage-Grouse. The recent amendment of plans guiding management of sage-grouse habitat on BLM-managed lands in Nevada may have adjusted some habitat boundaries and may require changes to the stipulations attached to some leases offered in this sale.

Responsible energy development includes consideration of parcels nominated for leasing as well as potential resource impacts for each parcel. Additional environmental review will take place during processing of an Application for Permit to Drill, when site-specific Conditions of Approval will be placed on the permit in addition to the stipulations already attached to the lease at the time of sale.

Documents detailing compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for the parcels in the Battle Mountain and Ely Districts can be viewed on the BLM NEPA Register website at https://go.usa.gov/xEQAN. Written comments will be accepted until May 6, 2019 and can be submitted online at the NEPA Register site, mailed to the BLM Battle Mountain District Office, 50 Bastian Road, Battle Mountain, NV 89820, faxed to Thomas Schmidt at (775) 753-0325, or emailed to [email protected]  Documents for parcels in the Elko District can be found at https://go.usa.gov/xEUuG.  Comments for the Elko District can be mailed to the BLM Elko District Office, 3900 East Idaho St., Elko, NV 89801.

Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at (800) 877-8339 to leave a message or question.  The FRS is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  Replies are provided during normal business hours.

The oil and gas industry on public lands in Nevada contributed $3.1 million in total economic output in Fiscal Year 2018. Continuous exploration, development, and site restoration is required to sustain production rates, jobs, income and royalties.

If you have questions please contact Melissa Jennings, (775) 482-7800, [email protected]; Thomas Schmidt, (775) 753-0343, [email protected]; or Tiera Arbogast, (775) 289-1872, [email protected]