Home > newsroom > Page
Obama Administration Roadblocks on Indian Land Hamper Energy Development, Stifle Job Creation, Hurt Tribal Economies


WASHINGTON, D.C., April 1, 2011 - As part of House Republican’s American Energy Initiative, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Indian Affairs and Native Alaskans will hold a hearing today on “Tribal development of energy resources and the creation of energy jobs on Indian lands." While Indian lands contain vast energy resources, actions by the Obama Administration have prevented many tribes from developing resources, creating jobs and improving their local tribal economies.

Indian Energy and Production Value According to a 2008 study by the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development (IEED):

Indian Energy Production
(dollars in millions)
Commodity Value of Reserves
Produced in 2007
Total Value of Produced
Reserves (1937-2007)
and (1928-2007) for Coal
Proven Recoverable
Reserves
Oil $898 $19,545 881,609,916 bbls. =
$66,121 at $75/bbl
Natural Gas $1,832 $18,677 10,011,633,407 mcf =
$60,070 at $4/mcf
Coal $616 $15,385 1,203,600,00 tons =
$14,443 at $12/ton

Since taking office, the Obama Administration has implemented numerous roadblocks to Indian energy development.

  • The Environmental Protection Agency ordered the cancellation of a permit for a Navajo Nation power plant that Navajo leadership called the most important development project the tribe has ever undertaken. The plant was expected to create 400 permanent jobs and generate $50 million per year in revenue.
  • The Bureau of Indian Affairs’ (BIA) burdensome and extremely slow lease approval process can take years. One oil and natural gas lease approved by the Crow Tribe in 2005 took two years to come online due to slow BIA processes.
  • Ute tribes have waited as long as five years for BIA to process an Application for Permit to Drill (APD). In 2010, one drilling operator, Anadarko submitted 187 APDs but only received an average of 1.7 APDs approved per month.
  • Increased APD fees by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) create disincentives to explore for energy on Indian lands, rather than state lands. Each APD fee has increased from $4,000 to $6,500 compared to a $100 fee for Montana state lands.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has no Minor Source Permitting Program within Indian Country. This means they must classify stationary energy development sources that would normally qualify as a “minor source” emitter on non-Indian land as “major source” emitters. This provides extreme economic disincentives for energy development on tribal lands.

###

Printable PDF of this document


Contact: Jill Strait, Spencer Pederson or Crystal Feldman 202-226-9019

Latest News

Bishop: FWS Mimics EPA Tactics in Expansive Critical Habitat Proposal

Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service announced the finalization of a new policy for defining and designating critical habitat under the Endangered Specie...... Read more

Committee Advances Bipartisan “National 9/11 Memorial at the World Trade Center Act”

Today, the Committee on Natural Resources passed H.R. 3036 (Rep. Tom MacArthur, R-NJ), the “National 9/11 Memorial at the World Trade Center Act,” legislation designating the National September 11 Mem...... Read more

New York Times: How Free Electricity Helped Dig $9 Billion Hole in Puerto Rico

To understand how Puerto Rico’s power authority has piled up $9 billion in debt, one need only visit this bustling city on the northwest coast. Twenty years ago, it was just another town with dwindlin...... Read more

View All News

Calendar

The Costly Impacts of Predation and Conflicting Federal Statutes on Native and Endangered Fish Species
Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans | 1334 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515
Legislative Hearing on H.R. 87, H.R. 295, H.R. 1621 and H.R. 2817
Subcommittee on Federal Lands | 1324 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515
The U.S. Department of Treasury's Analysis of the Situation in Puerto Rico
Full Committee | 1324 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515
View All Events