The Biden administration on Friday laid out plans to make fossil fuel companies pay more to drill on federal lands and waters.
Notable that the White House waits until the day after Thanksgiving – when they think most Americans aren’t paying attention – to announce yet another policy proposal that could raise the price of gas. But standby for the public pivot this week when they blame OPEC again.
The 18-page Interior Department report describes an “outdated” federal oil and gas leasing program that “fails to provide a fair return to taxpayers, even before factoring in the resulting climate-related costs.”Complete coverage from the COP26 U.N. climate summit
The document calls for increasing the government’s royalty rate — the 12.5 percent of profits fossil fuel developers must pay to the federal government in exchange for drilling on public lands — to be more in line with the higher rates charged by most private landowners and major oil and gas producing states. It also makes the case for raising the bond companies must set aside for cleanup before they begin new development.
Don’t laugh (or cry), but Interior officials say they will also consider how to incorporate the real-world toll of climate change into the price of permits for new fossil fuel extraction. The Biden administration this year set its “social cost of carbon” at $51 per ton of emissions, but suggested the number could go even higher as researchers develop new estimates of the damage caused by raging wildfires, deadly heat, crop-destroying droughts, and catastrophic floods.