Department of the Interior

Bureau of Ocean Energy Management

The federal government said it will continue taking steps toward a potential oil and gas lease sale in Cook Inlet, after a Louisiana district court judge ordered the Biden Administration to resume its lease programs there and in the Gulf of Mexico.

The U.S. Department of the Interior has been at odds with several Republican states over the federal leasing program since Biden halted the two auctions and promised to review the program earlier this year. It was part of a larger executive order aimed at fighting climate change.

Rashah McChesney/Alaska Energy Desk

Oil and gas leasing on federal lands and waters is on pause. That includes a sale in Alaska’s Cook Inlet that was originally slated for later this year and is now suspended indefinitely.

At the same time, the federal government is reviewing its energy program and gathering  input from industry experts, environmental advocates and tribal leaders across the country. Several representatives from those groups, including two from Alaska, weighed in on the program at an Interior Department forum Thursday.