WASHINGTON - On July 13, the House Natural Resources Committee approved H.R. 2150, the National Petroleum Reserve Alaska Access Act, by a bipartisan vote of 28 to 14.
As part of House Republicans' American Energy Initiative, the legislation, if passed and signed into law, will create new jobs, support current energy jobs in Alaska, and help lower energy costs by ensuring NPR-A resources are developed and transported in a timely and efficient manner.
"The passage of this bill signifies the bipartisan support for increased American energy production and recognition that the NPR-A should be used as intended - as a petroleum reserve to provide energy to the American people," said Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04). "Alaska has tremendous energy resources that are being kept under lock-and-key because of the Obama Administration’s policies."
The National Petroleum Reserve Alaska Access Act
- Affirms that the NPR-A is explicitly designated for the purpose of providing oil and natural gas resources to the United States.
- Requires that annual lease sales be held in the NPR-A in areas with the most oil and natural gas resources.
- Sets firm timelines for infrastructure permits to be approved to ensure that bureaucratic delays do not prevent oil and natural gas resources from being transported out of the NPR-A. It establishes a 60 day timeframe to approve infrastructure permits for leases where the Secretary has already issued a permit to drill and a six-month timeframe to approve infrastructure permits for all other existing and future Federal leases.
- Requires the Secretary of the Interior to prepare a right-of-way plan detailing how existing and future leases will be within 25 miles of an approved road or pipeline.
- Requires an updated comprehensive assessment, in consultation with the State of Alaska and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, of all oil and natural gas resources in the NPR-A.