The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management seeks public comment on its Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Gulf of Mexico OCS oil and gas lease sales tentatively scheduled from 2017–2022 (2017–2022 Gulf of Mexico Multisale Draft EIS or Draft Environmental Impact Statement).
BOEM proposes to conduct 10 region-wide Gulf of Mexico oil and gas lease sales during this five-year period that are tentatively scheduled in the Proposed 2017–2022 OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program (Five-Year Program). The lease sales proposed in the Gulf of Mexico in the Five-Year Program are region-wide lease sales comprised of the Western and Central Planning Areas, and a small portion of the Eastern Planning Area that is not subject to Congressional moratorium.
As Federal regulations allow for several related or similar proposals to be analyzed in one EIS (40 CFR 1502.4), the 2017–2022 Gulf of Mexico Multisale Draft EIS provides the environmental analyses necessary for all 10 regionwide Gulf of Mexico oil and gas lease sales tentatively scheduled in the FiveYear Program.
As a decision on whether and how to proceed with each proposed lease sale in the Five-Year Program is made individually, the proposed action considered in the 2017–2022 Gulf of Mexico Multisale Draft EIS is comprised of a single region-wide sale in the Gulf of Mexico.
The Draft EIS provides a discussion of the potential significant impacts of a proposed action and an analysis of reasonable alternatives to the proposed action. This NOA also serves to announce the beginning of the public comment period for the Draft EIS.
The Draft EIS and associated information are available on BOEM’s Web site at http://www.boem.gov/ nepaprocess/.
Comments should be submitted to BOEM no later than June 6, 2016.
BOEM will hold public meetings to obtain comments regarding the Draft Environmental Impact Statement. The meetings are scheduled as follows:
• Beaumont, Texas: Monday, May 9, 2016, Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites Beaumont—Plaza, 3950 I–10 South at Walden Road, Beaumont, Texas 77705, one meeting beginning at 4:30 p.m. CDT;
New Orleans, Louisiana: Thursday, May 12, 2016, Sheraton Metairie—New Orleans Hotel, 4 Gallaria Boulevard, Metairie, Louisiana 70001, one meeting beginning at 1:00 p.m. CDT;
• Panama City, Florida: Tuesday, May 17, 2016, Bay Point Golf Resort and Spa, 4114 Jan Cooley Drive, Panama City Beach, Florida 32408, one meeting beginning at 4:30 p.m. CDT;
• Mobile, Alabama: Wednesday, May 18, 2016, Renaissance Mobile Riverview Plaza Hotel, 64 South Water Street, Mobile, Alabama 36602, one meeting beginning at 4:30 p.m. CDT; and
• Gulfport, Mississippi: Thursday, May 19, 2016, Courtyard by Marriott, Gulfport Beachfront MS Hotel, 1600 East Beach Boulevard, Gulfport, Mississippi 39501, one meeting beginning at 4:30 p.m. CDT.
Click here to read BOEM’s Federal Register notice of these proposed actions, which provides more details.