On Thursday, a federal judge issued a permanent injunction that would permit fresh oil and gas leases on public lands.
According to The Hill, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals had just returned to Judge Terry Doughty of the Western District of Louisiana the injunction he had granted last year to achieve the same objective when he made his decision.
A January 2021 executive order by President Joe Biden that prohibited lease sales on federal lands was permanently overturned by Doughty’s decision on Thursday.
The plaintiff states that filed a lawsuit against Biden are Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia.
The Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act and the Mineral Leasing Act were both broken by Biden’s January 2021 order, according to Doughty, who was appointed by previous President Donald Trump.
According to The Hill, Doughty stated “Both statutes require Government Defendants’ agencies to sell oil and gas leases. The OCSLA has a Five-Year Plan in effect that requires eligible leases to be sold. Government Defendants’ agencies have no authority to make significant revisions in the OCSLA Five-Year Plan without going through the procedure mandated by Congress.”
“The MLA requires the [Interior Department] to hold lease sales, where eligible lands are available at lease quarterly. By stopping the process, the agencies are in effect amending two Congressional statutes. Neither the OCSLA nor the MLA gives the Government Defendants’ agencies the authority to implement a Stop of lease sales,” he ruled.
The decision was made a day after Doughty received a nationwide injunction against an order he issued in June 2021 from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. That decision was appealed by the Biden administration.
According to the appellate court decision, which was reported on jurist.org, the initial order did not adhere to standards requiring extremely explicit words and reasons for an injunction.
On that technicality, the matter was consequently returned to Doughty.
“We cannot reach the merits of the Government’s challenge when we cannot ascertain from the record what conduct—an unwritten agency policy, a written policy outside of the Executive Order, or the Executive Order itself—is enjoined,” the appeals court stated.
According to The Washington Post, Erik Milito, president of the National Ocean Industries Association, claimed that in the long term, the appellate decision might not be significant.
According to the Post, he declared, “The case is now back with the district court for action consistent with this new opinion or for a decision on the merits.”
“In either case, we could very well see another decision that rejects the leasing pause. In any event, the practical impacts may be minor in light of the mandates of the Inflation Reduction Act.”
According to KPVI-TV, the Inflation Reduction Act contained clauses forcing lease sales.
More on this story via The Western Journal:
Under the law, the Biden administration must reinstate $192 million in leases for the Gulf of Mexico. The law also requires two lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and one in Alaska before October 2023. CONTINUE READING…