Interior budget boosts oversight of offshore drilling

Rob Carr/AP file photo

The Interior Department would see only a 1 percent increase in overall funding next year under President Obama's 2013 budget proposal, but a significant boost is proposed for oversight and development of offshore oil and gas resources in keeping with the White House's recent push to expand domestic energy production.

The department's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and its Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement would together receive $386 million next year, an increase of about $28 million from its current budget.

In the wake of the disastrous BP oil spill in 2010, Interior has worked to revamp its oversight of offshore oil and gas development by breaking up the old Minerals Management Service into two agencies: one handling leasing and environmental review and one handling permitting, inspections and safety of drilling operations.

A portion of the proposed $386 million would also go toward completion of a Gulf of Mexico lease sale to round out a 2007-2012 exploration and production plan. Some funds also would go for implementation of the leasing plan for 2012-2017, which Obama touted in his State of the Union address as opening up more than 75 percent of oil and gas resources on the Outer Continental Shelf.

Overall, President Obama’s 2013 budget request proposes $11.4 billion for the Interior Department, an increase of about 1 percent from the 2012 enacted level of $11.2 billion. Last year, Obama requested $12.2 billion for Interior, with a heavy push toward revamping offshore oil and gas oversight in the wake of the BP spill.

In this year’s request, Obama once again calls for the end of tax breaks for oil and gas companies – a request that has gone unanswered for many years and several administrations.

“Oil and gas subsidies are costly to the American taxpayer and do little to incentivize production or reduce energy prices,” the request says, as Obama has argued multiple times in the past. The 2013 request calls for the elimination of some 12 tax breaks to oil, gas, and coal companies to raise $41 billion over 10 years.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download
  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.