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Trump administration to offer 76M acres for offshore drilling, largest lease sale in U.S. history


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The Trump administration is putting more than 76 million acres of federal water up for lease in the largest offshore drilling initiative in American history.
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced the massive lease sale, slated for March 2018, on Tuesday morning, and said the move is a key component of the administration’s effort to tap U.S. energy reserves and reap the economic benefits that come along with them.
“In today’s low-price energy environment, providing the offshore industry access to the maximum amount of opportunities possible is part of our strategy to spur local and regional economic dynamism and job creation and a pillar of President Trump’s plan to make the United States energy dominant,” Mr. Zinke said in a statement. “And the economic terms proposed for this sale include a range of incentives to encourage diligent development and ensure a fair return to taxpayers.”
The 76.9 million-acre lease sale will include federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coasts of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. The area up for lease is roughly the size of New Mexico, the Interior Department said.:snip:

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Trump energy policies push market forces to crush coal industry

Less than a year into his tenure, President Trump has dismantled much of his predecessor’s environmental agenda and rolled back the regulatory war on coal — but analysts still say coal’s long-term future is bleak and that the administration’s friendly policies toward natural gas could speed up the decline.
The cumulative impact of all the White House’s steps so far, including this month’s formal repeal of the coal-crushing Clean Power Plan, has led to optimism in the coal industry and among Republicans on Capitol Hill. Although there has been some positive short-term signs — coal mining jobs and production have ticked up this year — analysts say Mr. Trump and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, despite their best efforts, simply cannot ward off market forces that have been building for years.
“The reactions are limited. The potential of what the administration can do to tip the scales, it’s limited in scope,” said energy market analyst Dan Klein, managing director at Global Coal PIRA Energy Group, an analytics unit of S&P Global Platts.:snip:

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