President Biden issues 60-day moratorium on oil and gas drilling permits in Gulf of Mexico

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The Biden administration has issued a 60-day moratorium on oil and gas leasing and permitting on federal lands and waters while it evaluates the legal and policy implications of the program, according to a Department of Interior memo.

President Joe Biden made a campaign promise to ban all new federal drilling permits, part of his larger agenda to combat global climate change.

The Gulf Economic Survival Team (GEST) made the following statements today in response to the 60-day moratorium on issuing oil and gas leases, contracts and drilling permits on federal lands and waters:

“Today’s drastic actions by the Biden administration to eliminate leasing, drilling permits and contracts on federal lands and waters is detrimental to the hundreds of thousands of families who work in this industry and depend on these wages to pay their household bills and feed their families,” said Lori LeBlanc, GEST Executive Director. “The offshore oil and gas industry is a critical piece of our nation’s economy, and most especially for small businesses and families throughout the Gulf coast who depend on the industry’s high wage jobs.”

“Producing American energy is the heartbeat of Gulf coast local communities from Golden Meadow to Galveston,” said LeBlanc. “This act of prohibiting leasing and permitting in all areas of the outer continental shelf in the Gulf of Mexico is extremely short-sighted and will hurt our Gulf coast citizens at a time when they are already struggling. Today we should be focusing on revitalizing America’s economy and ensuring the survival of many small businesses as well as essential community services that are funded by energy industry tax revenues.”