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Sat Mar 21, 2020, 01:46 PM

Guess Who Else Wants A Coronavirus Bailout? The GOM Oil & Gas Industry, Of Course!

A group of 14 lawmakers is asking the Trump administration to help out the offshore energy industry amid a decline in oil prices linked to international disputes and the coronavirus pandemic. The 13 Republicans and one Democrat sent a letter on Friday to Interior Secretary David Bernhardt asking him to reduce or waive royalties for oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

“The Department of the Interior has existing authority to temporarily reduce or eliminate royalties set forth in the leases in the Western and Central Planning Areas of the Gulf of Mexico and other lease areas,” the lawmakers wrote.

“We urge you to examine the viability of a temporary reduction in royalties as domestic energy producers weather this combination of an [Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries]-driven price war and an epidemic that is driving millions of people around the world into quarantines of one kind or another,” they added. “Such an action in the short term will help mitigate a price war that is sinking prices and decreasing production.”

Their letter follows a separate action by the Trump administration that boosts the oil industry at large. On Thursday, the Energy Department announced that it will buy 30 million barrels of oil from producers to be stored in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

EDIT

https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/488740-lawmakers-ask-trump-administration-to-help-gulf-oil-and-gas

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