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The Bureau of Land Management’s state office in Wyoming will offer some 179,000 acres across 195 parcels in an oil and gas lease sale in the first quarter of 2022.
“We held a scoping period to solicit input on 459 parcels initially proposed for the deferred BLM Wyoming March and June 2021 oil and gas lease sales. Based on that input and our subsequent environmental review, we have decided to carry forward 195 of those proposed parcels,” BLM’s Wyoming office said.
The announcement of the lease sale marked the start of a 30-day period for comments on the lease sale’s environmental assessment that the state office of the BLM will review.
“The BLM meticulously reviews the proposed parcels to determine that leasing each of them will conform to all applicable policies and land use plans,” the authority said. “All parcels will include appropriate protections and stipulations, such as seasonal timing limitations and controlled surface use to protect sage-grouse habitat and other important natural resources.”
Wyoming was the eighth-largest oil-producing state in the U.S. last year, pumping over 89 million barrels of crude. It was also the ninth-largest gas producer in the country, pumping over 1.47 billion cu ft of gas.
Like all other oil-producing states, Wyoming suffered the effects of the pandemic directly, with drilling activity almost stopping completely last year. This year, however, it has stepped on the path of recovery. For the second week of October, local media reported there were 18 drilling rigs in the state, up from just 1 a year earlier.
The outlook is also bright because of current oil and gas prices. Wyoming oil and gas companies are hiring again, and some are considering reviving shelved projects. However, challenges remain, according to industry insiders. Among them is the Biden administration’s review of federal lease sales procedures that has made oil and gas drillers cautious and could affect the results of next year’s tender.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com