LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Today, the Nevada Conservation League released a statement on President Biden’s executive order to suspend oil and gas leasing on public lands, adding to a strong list of climate and environmental protection initiatives his administration has taken in the first week in office.
“As recently as 2019, Nevada faced oil and gas leasing threats to the Ruby Mountains — one of our state’s natural treasures and rural economic drivers. But it was thanks to the dedicated efforts of Senator Cortez Masto and the voices of local businesses, indigenous leaders, outdoor recreationists, and environmental advocates that we were able to protect our public lands,” said Paul Selberg, executive director of Nevada Conservation League. “President Biden’s suspension of new oil and gas leasing permits on our public lands would stop the reckless land grabs and prohibit any plans for dirty fossil fuel development in the future. This pause encourages a nation-wide shift away from fossil fuels like oil, coal, and natural gas and into alignment with our global climate goals to significantly reduce carbon emissions by 2050. This executive order builds on the work being done by Nevadans and our elected-officials to safeguard our land, water, wildlife, and health for all.”
Mandated by the Mineral Leasing Act of 1920, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Nevada holds oil and gas lease auctions four times per year, offering up the state’s public lands to private oil and gas companies. During the Trump administration, BLM Nevada offered over 2.5 million acres of public land for oil and gas leasing — one of the highest totals compared to other states — with a whopping 74 percent of land sold at the minimum bid.