AEA Comments on BLM’s Oil Shale Regulations

Energy is the lifeblood of our economy and skyrocketing energy prices illustrate the need for more domestic sources of energy. In the energy debate, there is a lot of talk about alternative energy, but oil shale is frequently not mentioned. This is shocking considering the incredible amount of energy available in oil shale. 

According to the Department of Energy, American oil shale may hold one trillion barrels of potentially recoverable oil. This staggering amount of oil reserves is greater than Saudi Arabia’s.

Currently, the Bureau of Land Management is writing regulations to make lands available for oil shale research and development activities. One of the biggest issues in the regulations is the royalty rate BLM charges for oil shale extraction.

We believe it is important that the royalty rate is low so that companies have the incentive to invest the billions of dollars necessary to discover the best ways to utilize these domestic resources. We propose that the royalty rate should start at 1 percent (or some other low rate) for the first ten years, growing to 3 percent to allow this industry to grow and produce large amounts of domestic energy.

Oil shale holds great promise as a way of increasing our domestic energy production and improving our energy security. We are pleased that BLM is taking this step to boost our domestic energy production.

You can view AEA’s comment here.

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