New restrictions on oil and natural gas development on federal lands – imposed at the last-minute by the outgoing Obama administration – must be overturned, New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez (R) said. Martinez is urging Republicans in Congress to repeal the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s “venting and flaring” rule because it threatens state funding for “schools, roads and healthcare.” The U.S. House is due to vote on a repeal measure later this week.
An executive order signed today by President Donald Trump will require the federal government to scale back existing regulations whenever departments and agencies issue new rules. At least two prior regulations must be identified for repeal for every new regulation proposed, the order states. The principle behind the order – removing existing regulations when new rules are proposed – has been used in other countries, including the United Kingdom and Canada.
New restrictions on oil and natural gas development on federal lands – imposed during the final days of the Obama administration – are harming the New Mexico economy and should be abolished, according to one of the state’s top business groups. The New Mexico Business Coalition is endorsing the effort to overturn the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s “venting and flaring” rule, which has drawn opposition from officials across the West.
The BLM’s “venting and flaring” rule and the agency’s “Planning 2.0” have been highlighted by analysts and key lawmakers in recent days. These measures, approved by the Obama Interior Department late last year, could be abolished under the 1996 Congressional Review Act, a measure that allows agency regulations to be overturned by a majority of lawmakers and the approval of the president.
Labor leaders are cheering President Donald Trump for reviving the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipeline projects after years of opposition from “keep it in the ground” groups and the Obama administration.
The Obama administration’s last-minute regulatory push against oil and natural gas development on federal lands is still stirring controversy in New Mexico, with two state officials publicly clashing over the new restrictions.
“Perhaps we could cure some agencies like the BLM of Potomac Fever by moving them out of Washington,” U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) said during a confirmation hearing for U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke (R-Mont.), who has been nominated for the post of Interior Secretary.