January 31, 2020 
Contact: Ashley Korenblat

NEW REPORT: Public Land Solutions Releases Report Calling for an End to Speculative Oil and Gas Leasing, Highlighting Long-Term Economic Impacts In the American West

(Moab, UT )— Today, Public Land Solutions released a new report, “How Speculative Oil and Gas Leasing is Threatening Economic Growth in the American West,” highlighting the impacts of speculative leasing in five Western communities: Caliente, Nevada; Boulder City, Nevada; Moab, Utah; Price, Utah; and Fruita, Colorado. The report calls attention to the millions of acres of public land that are being leased with low to no potential for oil and gas development, but that support recreation and other activities that drive economic growth in nearby communities. 

“Speculative leasing on public lands that do not have any drilling potential squanders enormous opportunities for economic growth and business innovation across the West. These landscapes, which at times are being leased for less than a cup of coffee, could instead be used for developing a robust outdoor economy, including supporting mountain biking, fishing, hunting, boating and outdoor recreation, but instead are lying dormant and profitless in the hands of the oil and gas industry. Outdoor recreation is an $887 billion industry, yet the Bureau of Land Management’s current policies and outdated system undermines this important economic driver for communities in the West in favor of the status quo,” said Ashley Korenblat, Executive Director of Public Land Solutions.”

“Our new report shines a spotlight on five communities in the American West that are experiencing serious impacts from speculative leasing. We must start prioritizing the American people, local outdoor recreation economies, and businesses over oil and gas companies. This report demonstrates the serious need to update our oil and gas leasing framework so that BLM can more efficiently and effectively manage public lands, for everyone—not just the oil and gas industry.” 

This report comes on the heels of U.S Senator Catharine Cortez Masto’s introduction of the End Speculative Oil and Gas Leasing Act of 2020 (S. 3202), which would put an end to the wasteful practice of leasing public lands with low or no drilling potential and so that these areas can be better managed for other uses. 


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