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API: Gulf Lease Sales Show Benefits of Opening Atlantic to Oil & Gas Activity

Brian Straessle | 202.682.8114 |

WASHINGTON, March 19, 2014 – Offshore lease sales today in the Central and Eastern Gulf of Mexico highlight what Americans could gain by opening additional areas to offshore oil and natural gas development.

“Every lease sale held in the U.S. strengthens our hand as an energy superpower,” said API Director of Upstream and Industry Operations Erik Milito. “Offshore lease sales have raised more than $17.3 billion for the government over the last ten years and allowed our industry to create more jobs and produce more energy here at home. Holding lease sales in the Atlantic and more of the Eastern Gulf of Mexico would make America stronger economically and diplomatically.”

Opening the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf to oil and natural gas development in the government’s next five-year offshore leasing plan could create nearly 280,000 new jobs, raise $51 billion in new revenue for the government, and add up to 1.3 million barrels of oil equivalent per day to domestic energy production – which is about 70 percent of current output from the Gulf of Mexico – according to a study by Quest Offshore Resources

Political calls for higher taxes on the U.S. oil and natural gas industry would put domestic energy development projects at risk along with the resource production, job creation and government revenue they provide, according to a study by Wood Mackenzie.

Milito also called for a revenue sharing agreement like the one in effect for states bordering the Gulf of Mexico to be extended to other coastal states.

“Every state that hosts oil and natural gas development off its shores should get a fair share of the revenue collected by the federal government,” said Milito.

API represents all segments of America’s oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 580 members produce, process, and distribute most of the nation’s energy. The industry also supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy.