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The Biden administration said it will resume the sale of leases to drill for oil and gas on federal land starting next week, but with a significant reduction in the number of acres offered and an increase in the royalties that companies must pay to drill.
The Department of the Interior announced that on Monday it will publish a lease sale notice to drill on 144,000 acres of government land in 9 states, 80% less than initially assessed for a prospective lease.
Companies that want to rent them will have to pay the federal government a tax equivalent to 18.75% of their profits, which represents a considerable increase compared to the 12.5% that was established until now.
These new leases will be the first offered by Biden since he took office in January 2021.
that same month, the president signed a battery of executive orders to combat the climate crisis, These included the suspension of new leases to extract oil and gas on federal land.
Biden’s decision this Friday breaks one of his 2020 election promiseswhen he pledged to end the leasing of public land for energy extraction and to reduce greenhouse gases.
The main environmental groups in the US, such as the Sierra Club, oppose the use of “fracking” or hydraulic fracturing because it is an extraction technique that requires a large amount of chemicals, so there is a risk of contamination. soil and water where it is applied.
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