In this 9 February 2018 file photo, U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke walks through the Western Conservation and Hunting Expo in Salt Lake City. Zinke said Tuesday, March 6, that his agency should be a partner with energy companies that seek to drill for oil and gas on public land. Photo: Rick Bowmer / AP Photo

By David Koenig
6 March 2018

HOUSTON (AP) – Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says his agency should be a partner with oil and gas companies that seek to drill on public land and that long regulatory reviews with an uncertain outcome are “un-American.”

Speaking Tuesday to a major energy-industry conference, Zinke described the Trump administration’s efforts to increase offshore drilling, reduce regulations, and streamline inspections of oil and gas operators.

“Interior should not be in the business of being an adversary. We should be in the business of being a partner,” Zinke said to a receptive audience that included leaders of energy companies and oil-producing countries.

Zinke said the government should shorten the permitting process for energy infrastructure — it shouldn’t take longer than two years.

“If you ask an investor to continuously put money on a project that is uncertain because the permit process has too much uncertainty, ambiguity, (it) is quite frankly un-American,” he said.

The Interior Department manages 500,000 million acres — one-fifth of the U.S. land mass — as well as the lease of offshore areas for oil drilling. One-fifth of U.S. oil production takes place on land or water that the Interior Department leases to private energy companies.

Environmentalists accuse Zinke and the administration of undercutting environmental rules to help oil, gas and coal companies.

Alex Taurel, a legislative official with the League of Conservation Voters, said Tuesday that Zinke “thinks our public lands are nothing more than an ATM for his industry friends. If anything is un-American, it’s this administration’s persistent attacks on America’s public lands.” [more]

Zinke says Interior should be a partner with oil companies


  1. Anonymous said...

    Yes - let's change the rules so we can gut the remaining resources even faster and enrich our bloated American ecocidal corporations even more!

    Interior is not what it once was, not even close. It's now a facility to accelerate more planetary destruction for the select few (this generation) at the expense of the many (all future generations).

    Pretty damned stupid. But then again, that's "American".  


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