Expression of Interest (EOI)
An expression of interest (EOI) is an informal nomination to request certain lands be included in a competitive oil and gas lease sale. Please submit your EOI via the National Fluid Minerals Lease Sale System. There are other forms of nominations besides EOIs (such as presale offers or Bureau-nominated parcels) but EOIs are used most frequently.
EOIs are not automatically placed on a sale when received and the submission of an EOI does not guarantee these lands will be offered at auction. The parcels must be reviewed for availability and environmental concerns prior to being placed on a sale. Additionally, if your EOI includes lands where the surface is managed by another agency, the BLM is required to obtain consent and recommendations from that agency before placing the lands on a competitive sale notice. In some cases it may be necessary to update environmental documents to include current conditions. Therefore, the time required to process individual EOIs will vary.
Regulations pertaining to competitive leasing can be found at 43 Code of Federal Regulations 3120. Prior to submitting your EOI, the BLM public records should be reviewed to make certain the lands are available for leasing. Below are a few instances where lands are not available for leasing:
• Lands currently leased for oil and gas,
• Lands where the oil and gas mineral estate is not federally owned,
• Lands within city limits,
• Lands withdrawn from mineral leasing, Lands located in designated or proposed
wilderness areas (WSA/DWA), or
• Lands within an Indian Reservation.
In checking the public records, make certain that:
- Expired leases have not been extended beyond their expiration date by either diligently drilling wells, unit approval, etc., and
- Terminated leases are not in the process of being reinstated.
Please ensure your EOI contains the following information:
- After reviewing the BLM's land status records, complete legal land description including state, county, meridian, township, range, section, and aliquot part or other appropriate specific land description such as lot number, tract number, or metes and bounds description.
- If your nomination includes "split estate lands" (private surface/Federal minerals), your EOI must include the name and mailing address of the current private surface owner(s). This information should be referenced to the appropriate legal description. Whenever a split estate parcel is included in an oil and gas Notice of Competitive Lease Sale, the BLM will send a courtesy letter to the surface owner(s). The letter will provide the surface owner notice of the scheduled auction, as well as information about the BLM's regulations and procedures for Federal oil and gas leasing and development on split estate lands.
- Your contact information - The BLM will make public the name, address, date submitted, and land description in your EOI submission. EOI submitters who consider their name and address confidential should not include that information in their EOI. The BLM no longer requires submitters of EOIs to provide their name or address, so EOIs can be submitted anonymously. However, without contact information, the BLM can't reach the EOI submitter for questions or clarifications if needed.