|March 16, 2006|
Contact: Steven Hall, 307-775-6015 or
Heather Feeney, 202-452-5031
BLM to Hold Wyoming Session on Split Estate Issues
The Bureau of Land Management will hold two listening sessions in Casper, Wyo. on how best to implement the split estate provisions of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Congress directed the BLM to review current policies and practices for managing so-called “split-estate” situations in consultation with affected private landowners, the oil and gas industry, and other interested parties.
The Casper sessions will be held on Friday, March 24, at the Ramkota Inn, 800 North Poplar. There will be an afternoon session from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. and an evening session from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. The listening session will begin with an overview of the split estate provisions of the Energy Policy Act and current split estate practices, policies, regulations, and laws that guide management of the Federal mineral estate. A panel of senior BLM officials will then listen to comments from those in attendance.
Participants who wish to speak will be asked to sign in at the beginning of the session. Those requesting to speak will be provided a set amount of time to give their recommendations for managing oil and gas resources in split estate situations. The amount of time allocated to each speaker will be determined by the number of participants wanting to speak. A facilitator will call speakers in the order in which they sign in. Multiple comments on the same theme will not be tallied as “votes” for purposes of the report.
Comments may also be submitted by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org by April 1, 2006. Background information on split estate issues is available on the BLM Split Estate website: www.blm.gov/bmp. A BLM team will carefully consider all ideas and recommendations received by e-mail and at the listening sessions in preparing a report to Congress summarizing the review.
The BLM manages 700 million acres of subsurface mineral estate nationwide, including approximately 58 million acres where the surface is privately owned. In many cases, surface rights and mineral rights were severed under the terms of Federal homesteading laws, such as the Stock Raising Homestead Act of 1916.
Managing the Federal mineral estate, along with 261 million surface acres, gives the BLM a central role in implementing the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Acting as steward of numerous energy resources – coal, oil and gas, geothermal, hydropower, solar, wind, and biomass energy resources – is part of the agency’s multiple-use mission to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.