Interior Secretary Zinke’s Confirmation Applauded by Western Energy Alliance

March 1, 2017

DENVER – Western Energy Alliance released the following statement following today’s confirmation of Ryan Zinke as secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior:

“Western Energy Alliance applauds the Senate’s confirmation of Secretary Zinke. Now that he is in office, we can get on with responsible development of oil and natural gas resources on appropriate public lands,” said Kathleen Sgamma, president at the Alliance. “With the shift in the White House away from punishing the industry to actually encouraging domestic production, the western oil and natural gas industry can help the Trump Administration create jobs and economic opportunity across the nation.

“With the right policies, western producers could increase production by as much as 25 percent, creating 19,363 jobs. The policies can be as simple as moving forward with the environmental analysis and permits from projects that have been held up for the past eight years, to rolling back redundant regulation put in place in the waning days of the Obama Administration. We ask Secretary Zinke to start by helping convince the Senate to overturn the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) venting and flaring rule while at the same time directing BLM to quickly approve the backlog of pipeline permits that is forcing companies to flare.

“Western Energy Alliance has many other ideas for reinvigorating energy development on non-park, non-wilderness lands while still protecting the environment. Industry innovation has resulted in 70 percent less footprint on the land, and a long-term trend of reduced methane emissions. We look forward to working with Secretary Zinke on policies such as increasing certainty in the leasing process, ensuring BLM field offices follow the law when it comes to permitting applications, and working cooperatively with states on sage grouse protection.”