Federal Lands Fracking Ban Target?

With politics starting to heat up for primaries as we head into the end of year, fracking has taken a front seat in a bad way. Every Democratic front-runner has stated a ban or limitation to fracking in the U.S. While few believe they could pass a total ban on fracking, it is not out of this world to think they could put a short-term ban or moratorium on fracking within Federal acreage. This would create a perfect storm for some basins that are comprised mostly of federal acreage such as the Powder River and parts of New Mexico. Over the years, the industry has seen short-term federal bans for lizards and birds that have lasted months to years and have added thousands of costs per well. A new ban could be hidden as another review of policy if opposition seems high. Figure 1: Democratic presidential candidates and fracking stance. Federal leases have been seen in an increasingly positive light lately due to their low royalty rates and long lease terms. These benefits far outweigh the additional paperwork and cost of operating on a federal lease. In Wyoming, we have seen the review and passing of large-scale projects that will… continue reading

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