Next Steps to Reform the Regulations Governing Offshore Oil and Gas Planning and Leasing

30 Pages Posted: 7 Jun 2017  

Andrew Hartsig

Ocean Conservancy - Alaska Office

Mike Levine

Oceana - Alaska Office

Jayni Hein

NYU School of Law; Institute for Policy Integrity, NYU School of Law

Jason A. Schwartz

New York University School of Law

Date Written: October 18, 2016

Abstract

Pursuant to the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA), the U.S. Department of the Interior manages offshore oil and gas activities in federal waters. While the agency has proposed and enacted important improvements to the rules that govern some of those activities, it has never comprehensively modernized the regulations that govern offshore oil and gas planning, lease sales, or the review and permitting of exploratory drilling. These phases of the process are overseen by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). In this Article, we argue that fundamental reform is necessary and highlight a series of key themes and topics that must be addressed to improve the regulatory process and promote better, more consistent management outcomes for offshore energy production and environmental stewardship. While the Article draws on examples from frontier areas — in particular the U.S. Arctic Ocean — the recommended changes would apply to and benefit all areas of the Outer Continental Shelf.

Keywords: BOEM, Interior, Offshore, Leasing, Arctic, Oil, Gas, Outer Continental Shelf, Ocean, Offshore Drilling, OCSLA

JEL Classification: K32

Suggested Citation

Hartsig, Andrew and Levine, Mike and Hein, Jayni and Schwartz, Jason A., Next Steps to Reform the Regulations Governing Offshore Oil and Gas Planning and Leasing (October 18, 2016). Alaska Law Review, Vol. 33, No. 1, 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2854280

Andrew Hartsig

Ocean Conservancy - Alaska Office ( email )

750 W. 2nd Avenue
Suite 206
Anchorage, AK 99501
United States

Mike Levine

Oceana - Alaska Office ( email )

175 South Franklin Street
Suite 418
Juneau, AK 99801
United States

Jayni Hein (Contact Author)

NYU School of Law ( email )

139 MacDougal St.
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

Institute for Policy Integrity, NYU School of Law ( email )

139 MacDougal St.
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

Jason A. Schwartz

New York University School of Law ( email )

40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

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