Moore, 20 Republicans propose bill to end delays in energy permitting, leasing

With more than 4,600 permits to drill still pending at the U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Rep. Blake Moore (R-UT) recently introduced a bill that aims to hold the Biden administration accountable for the delays in the domestic energy permitting and leasing process.

“Since President Biden took office, his policies have directly stalled our domestic oil and gas production, raising costs for American families and leaving us dependent on corrupt nations — including Russia — for energy,” Rep. Moore said. “As we watch the devastating global instability in Eastern Europe and experience pain at the gas pump, it is abundantly clear why we must unleash America’s energy production capabilities and hold the Biden administration’s feet to the fire so we can become energy independent and keep more money in Americans’ pockets.”

Rep. Moore on March 30 sponsored the Protecting Energy Independence and Transparency Act, H.R. 7298, which has 20 Republican original cosponsors, including U.S. Reps. Dan Newhouse (R-WA), Pete Stauber (R-MN), Garret Graves (R-LA), Liz Cheney (R-WY), and Troy Balderson (R-OH). 

If enacted, H.R. 7298 would require the Secretary of the Interior to submit a report on expressions of interest and applications for permits to drill and would amend the Mineral Leasing Act to require that data be published on expressions of interest and applications for permits to drill.

Specifically, the Department of the Interior (DOI) would be required to issue any pending permits that have successfully completed environmental analysis and other required reviews within 30 days of the bill’s enactment, according to a summary provided by the lawmakers, and to submit a report to Congress on the status of nominated parcels for future lease sales; the number of Applications for Permits to Drill (APDs) that are pending approval; how long these items have been pending; and the reason these items have been delayed, according to the congressional record bill summary.

DOI also would have to publish the number of pending and approved APDs and expressions of interest for parcel nominations for lease sales, according to the summary of the bill, which has been referred for consideration to the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee.