Charleston, WV – Today, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, released the following statement on the Department of the Interior’s new five-year offshore leasing plan proposal.
“I’m pleased that the Department has finally released their long-overdue proposal for the next five-year offshore leasing plan. While Americans everywhere are suffering from record high gas prices and disruptions in the global oil market caused by Putin’s senseless war in Ukraine, the Department of the Interior hasn’t held any successful offshore lease sales since November 2020. Moreover, our allies across the free world are in desperate need of American oil and gas – which is among the cleanest produced in the world. Against this backdrop, I am disappointed to see that ‘zero’ lease sales is even an option on the table. There is already more than enough flexibility in the program to adjust sales later, which the Administration has previously taken advantage of to cancel three sales earlier this year. Our leasing programs are a critical component of American energy security. I hope the Administration will ultimately greenlight a plan that will expand domestic energy production, done in the cleanest way possible, while also taking the necessary steps to get our offshore leasing program back on track to give the necessary market signals to provide price relief for every American.”