Today, the Department of Interior released a report which details the amount of land the Obama administration has made available for drilling, the rate of drilling permits processed, and how little land is actually in use.

It’s time to clear up the muddy waters around the drilling debate, and today’s report by the Obama administration does just that.

While Doc Hastings and Big Oil are out there spinning talking points, Secretary Salazar has been moving forward responsible energy development on public lands.

The simple truth is approval rates for drilling permits are up, and industry lays idle hands on over 21 million acres of public lands. We should put an end to Big Oil’s speculation on our public lands and continue to move forward with responsible energy development.


lands leased but not drilled
Map displaying how many acres in states are leased for drilling and how many of those acres are not in use (from DoI report).

Some more data from the DoI report:

Region Acres Under Lease Acres w/ Inactive Leases Percent w/ Inactive Leases
Gulf 34,009,660 23,834,317 70.1%
Pacific 241,023 23,534 9.8%
Alaska 3,723,465 3,650,974 98.1%