BLM Oil and Gas Lease Sales Increased 86% In 2017 To $360 Million

(February 13, 2018) — In advancing the Trump administration’s goals of promoting American energy dominance, the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) state offices in 2017 generated nearly $360 million from oil and gas lease sales, an 86% increase over the previous year’s results of $192.5 million. Among the sales, which together were the highest in nearly a decade, were rights to 949 parcels covering 792,823 acres.

“Oil and gas lease sales on public land directly support domestic energy production and the president’s energy dominance and job growth priorities for America,” said deputy secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt. “2017 was a big year for oil and gas leasing on federal lands, and these sales provide critical revenue and job growth in rural America. We will continue to work into the next year to identify and modify unnecessary regulations that impede responsible energy development.”

“These results are hard proof that our sound energy policy is working for both public lands and Americans in terms of reliable power and job growth opportunities,” said Brian Steed, BLM deputy director for policy and programs. “Going into the new year, we remain committed to an era of American energy dominance through our multiple-use mission that ensures opportunities for commercial, recreational, and conservation activities on healthy and productive public lands.”

Bonus bids from oil and gas leasing in calendar year 2017 came to $358,036,988 in preliminary figures released this month by BLM. This is the highest grossing sale year since 2008 when bonus bids came to
$408,631,537. Sales in 2017 easily outpaced 2016 sales of $192,482,007.

Fifty percent of the revenue from lease sales goes to the state where the oil and gas activity is occurring, while the rest goes to the U.S. Treasury. If the leases result in producing oil or gas wells, revenue from royalties based on production are also shared with the state. A bonus bid is a one-time payment in exchange for exclusive access to explore a parcel and grants an exclusive lease for a set period of time. BLM awards oil and gas leases for a term of 10 years, and as long thereafter as there is production of oil and gas in paying quantities.

(SOURCE: The Weekly Propane Newsletter, February 12, 2018. Go to for subscription information.)