Home / News / US MMS begins process for lease sale offshore Virginia

The US Minerals Management Service (MMS) has taken the first step in the multi-year leasing process to hold a sale for acreage offshore Virginia.  The Call for Information and Interest/Nominations and Notice of Intent (Call/NOI) to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was scheduled for publication and public comment on 13 November.

The purpose of the Call/NOI is to gather information to use for planning and analysis and does not indicate a preliminary decision to hold a lease sale, according to a news release from MMS.

US MMS begins process for lease sale offshore Virginia

“At the request of the governor, MMS included the area offshore Virginia based on the commonwealth’s current energy policy and continued interest in knowing what resources may be off its coastline,” said MMS director Randall Luthi. The sale, referred to as Lease Sale 220, is proposed to be held in 2011.

The area offshore Virginia was initially included in the Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program: 2007-2012, but leasing was prohibited due to an executive withdrawal and a congressional moratorium. In July 2008, President Bush lifted the withdrawal and the congressional moratoria expired on  30 September 2008.

Currently the area offshore Virginia being considered for leasing includes a 50-mile buffer and a no-obstruction zone from the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay.

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