Casper, WY – The U.S. Bureau of Land Management says it has nearly cleared a backlog of more than 1,500 unissued oil and gas leases in Wyoming dating back more than two years.
Since last summer, the BLM has issued 1,109 leases and decided to hold off on 222 others. It plans to decide on the final 170 within a couple weeks.
The BLM sold the leases to oil and gas companies as long ago as
June, 2008, but didn't issue them while it sought to address
environmentalist concerns. Waiting for important decisions
involving endangered species also contributed to the delay.
The backlog prompted the Western Energy Alliance, a petroleum
industry association, to sue the BLM last fall. The group now says
the BLM has done a good job of clearing the backlog.