By Scott Castro
California Oil and Gas Update:
In-depth look at the California BLM's fracking decision
Oil and gas lease sales on public lands set to resume in 2015 based upon independent fracking report
On August 28, 2014 the California State Office of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) signaled its intent to resume oil and gas lease sales on Federal lands in the state beginning next year with its announcement of a "comprehensive strategy for the federal oil and gas program in California." This announcement was issued after an independent study commissioned by the BLM found limited environmental effects from hydraulic fracturing (i.e., "fracking") and other enhanced drilling techniques. The BLM's decision lifts a self-imposed BLM moratorium on oil and gas lease sales in California put in place on May 3, 2013, and marks another chapter in the seesaw debate in California and the nation over the use of well stimulation techniques, and raises some important considerations for the oil and gas industry in the state.