The sale of offshore oil and natural gas leases recently in the western Gulf of Mexico highlights the benefit of allowing development in the 87 percent of the Outer Continental Shelf the federal government has placed off-limits, said API Upstream Group Director Erik Milito.
“Today’s lease sale is a reminder that opening new areas to offshore energy exploration and production could create nearly half a million American jobs and raise tens of billions of dollars to help fund the government,” said Milito. “The western and central sections of the Gulf of Mexico remain important areas for domestic oil and natural gas production, but they have been continually explored for decades while the vast majority of U.S. waters are kept off-limits.
“Tremendous potential exists for job creation and energy development in the Atlantic, Pacific, Arctic and Eastern Gulf of Mexico. We should seize the opportunity to further America’s energy renaissance by exploring and producing in new areas offshore.”
API represents all segments of America’s oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 600 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.