Oil and Gas Leasing on the Outer Continental Shelf

Center for Sustainable Economy has filed its opening brief in a lawsuit to halt the Obama Administration’s latest 5-year program to open new areas offshore to oil and gas leasing. Authorized by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), the new 5-year program is the first since the Gulf oil disaster. The lawsuit was filed in the United States Circuit Court for the District of Columbia. The lawsuit argues that incomplete and flawed economic analysis led BOEM to rush ahead with new offshore leases that may not be economically justified in violation of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act and National Environmental Policy Act. CSE also contends that by failing to account for the option to wait to lease offshore resources BOEM has subjected the American public to a higher risk of catastrophic spills while failing to maximize benefits from lease sales. CSE is represented in the lawsuit by environmental attorney Steven Sugarman and Michael Livermore of the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University School of Law.