The Department of the Interior’s current COVID-19 policy incorporates CDC guidance. As CDC science-based guidance changes, our policy will adapt. Visitors have always been encouraged by DOI to review CDC guidance when making their plans to recreate responsibly. CDC guidance indicates that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations. Unvaccinated people must wear a mask indoors in DOI buildings at all times and outdoors when physical distancing cannot be maintained. All people, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear a mask on all forms of public transportation and in healthcare settings on DOI lands. We will continue to ask visitors to follow CDC guidance to recreate responsibly.
The latest information on changes to facilities and services in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19) is available here.
The Division of Helium Resources
The Division of Helium Resources conducts surveys to discover helium supplies and determines the extent of helium resources; negotiates and administers helium fee and royalty contracts; researches, adjudicates, collects, and audits monies for helium extracted from Federal lands; analyzes natural gas samples from around the world to locate and evaluate sources of helium; conducts investigative and research work for purposes related to the helium survey and helium resources evaluation programs; and makes information about helium resources and helium conservation available to other Federal agencies and the general public. The Division includes the Gas Analysis Team and the Federal Leased Lands Team.
The Gas Analysis Team:
- Develops analytical procedures for gas sample and product analysis;
- Analyzes natural gas samples from around the world to locate and evaluate sources of helium;
- Provides special troubleshooting service on government and private helium plant-operated analytical equipment to alleviate operating problems;
- Provides consulting services to other Federal agencies concerning helium analysis, transfer, and use;
- Supports pipeline and gasfield operations;
- Certifies standards used in operations;
- Trains technicians in the operation and maintenance of analytical equipment;
- Conducts investigations, evaluations, and research into the occurrence of helium and the determination of the extent of helium resources;
- Conducts investigations and evaluations of data worldwide with emphasis given to the United States;
- Identifies sources of helium on Federal and non-Federal land, determines the extent and volume of such resources, determines the feasibility of such reserves as a potential source of helium, and conducts research on improved methods of conservation and efficient utilization of Federally owned helium;
- Prepares for publication internal reports, information circulars, and reports of investigations to document and distribute the results of its investigations, evaluations, and research, and
- Acts as an internal consulting body on reservoir and geology.
The Federal Leased Lands Team:
- Administers the helium fee and royalty payment program;
- Works to ensure that the Federal Government receives proper payment for helium extracted from Federal mineral acreage;
- Researches mineral resources data, documentation, and oil and gas industry databases to identify helium production, Federal acreage, and the parties involved in the extraction of helium contained in natural gas streams supplying process gas to private helium extraction plants;
- Adjudicates helium rights;
- Identifies and contacts lessees, producers, and operators involved in the receipt and dissemination of helium proceeds regarding legal rights and payment due the Federal Government;
- Uses line-item accounting detail to manage and reconcile collected helium revenues with the Federal financial accounting system;
- Audits revenues to ensure that the government receives proper and timely payment for extracted Federal helium, and
- Researches legal records and records maintained by the BLM, private vendors, gas companies, and court orders related to the helium settlement cases completed in 1987-1990.