President Biden Proposes Increases in BOEM Budget through Clean Energy Initiatives

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 3/9/2023, Location: North America

The Biden-Harris administration today released the Presidentís Budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2024. The budget reflects the Administrationís commitment to ongoing efforts vital to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Managementís (BOEM) mission, which include advancing renewable energy, creating good-paying jobs with a free and fair chance to join a union, bolstering energy security, supporting economic prosperity, and ensuring the reliability and affordability of domestic clean energy.

The FY 2024 Presidentís Budget for BOEM provides $268.2 million in total budget authority to fund the Bureauís mission to manage the nationís offshore energy and mineral resources in an environmentally and economically responsible manner. The budget makes critical investments for the American people that will help lay a stronger foundation for shared growth and prosperity for generations to come.

ďThe Presidentís 2024 budget request provides BOEM the needed resources to execute our mission and help achieve the Administrationís ambitious goals to fight climate change and create good paying jobs,Ē said BOEM Director Elizabeth Klein. "The budget request will ensure we are equipped to oversee offshore energy and marine minerals development in a responsible manner for the benefit of the American people.Ē

The Presidentís budget proposal for BOEM will:
Bolster Environmental Programs. The FY 2024 budget includes $92.8 million for BOEMís Environmental Programs. Responsible environmental stewardship is a central focus in every activity BOEM undertakes. BOEMís Environmental Programs ensure that programmatic decision-making is guided by the best available science and Indigenous knowledge, by contributing transparent environmental research and data to inform the public, stakeholders, diverse ocean users, and external decision-makers about the potential impacts of Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) energy and mineral activities. This work enables BOEM to identify risks and mitigation strategies to assist with conservation and protection of the human, marine, and coastal environments. Fostering effective government-to-government relationships and improving Tribal Nationsí consultation capacities with BOEM on the impacts of potential projects and decisions are critical components of the Environmental Programsí responsibilities. During FY 2024, BOEM will continue to prioritize working with Tribal, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian communities and institutions to ensure scientific and Indigenous knowledge inform BOEMís decision-making. BOEM will also work to promote equity in access to and participation in BOEMís decision-making process through ongoing engagement with underserved and environmental justice communities to incorporate their feedback in both addressing impacts and delivering benefits.

Advance Renewable Energy. The FY 2024 budget request includes $64.5 million for BOEMís Renewable Energy Program. Building upon its work in FY 2023, BOEM continues to make considerable strides toward accomplishing the Biden-Harris administrationís goal of deploying 30 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind energy capacity by 2030 and the Department of the Interiorís goal to deploy 15 GW of floating offshore wind capacity by 2035. In FY 2024, BOEM will maintain an all-of-government approach by collaborating with multiple government agencies and states, and consulting with Tribal Nations to expand responsible offshore wind development. BOEM aims to run efficient, transparent, and inclusive processes to identify future lease sale areas; avoid, reduce, and mitigate conflicts; and advance projects. BOEM will also work with the Governors of U.S. Territories to explore the potential of offshore wind lease sales in federal waters off their coasts, as authorized by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

Continue to Support Conventional Energy. The FY 2024 budget requests $72.3 million for BOEMís Conventional Energy Program. BOEM continues to support U.S. energy security and meet its statutory obligations under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act by administering existing leases, permitting geological and geophysical surveys, evaluating resources, and developing the next National OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program. In meeting these obligations, BOEM conducts its Conventional Energy program in a manner that delivers a fair return for the American taxpayer, mitigates and addresses adverse impacts, and ensures leaseholders maintain adequate financial assurance. In the coming fiscal year, the Department will finalize and implement the next National OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program. President Bidenís Bipartisan Infrastructure Law gave the Department new authority to authorize leases, easements, and rights-of-way on the OCS that support carbon sequestration activities. The FY 2024 budget will ensure the effective launch of that program and allow for reviewing new proposals for carbon storage projects, as well as related environmental analyses.

Ensure Responsible Management of Marine Minerals. The FY 2024 budget proposes $16.4 million for BOEMís Marine Minerals Program. BOEMís marine minerals activities help ensure the responsible management of the nationís OCS mineral resources by considering environmental impacts and using the best available science to improve coastal resilience, enhance natural disaster preparedness, assess the availability of critical minerals, and protect shorelines essential for national security, the economy, and the environment. BOEM continues to have robust engagement with stakeholders and state and local governments to facilitate the procurement of sand and sediment resources for coastal restoration and beach nourishment upon request and when necessary to preserve infrastructure, defense facilities, and the nationís coasts. BOEMís FY 2024 budget request underscores the importance of increasing current understanding of marine minerals and subsea environments to inform the management of OCS mineral resources, address environmental harms due to climate change, and avoid potential multiple-use conflicts and impacts by advancing the development of the National Offshore Sand Inventory, Marine Minerals Information System, and National Offshore Critical Mineral Inventory.

Provide Executive Direction. The FY 2024 budget request includes $22.3 million for BOEMís executive functions, providing Bureau-wide strategic leadership, management, budget, and administrative support. In FY 2024, BOEM will continue to support Biden-Harris administration and Department-wide initiatives to promote Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility by implementing the Justice, Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Charter and building-out its Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Civil Rights to advance all aspects of equal opportunity, diversity, and inclusion to foster a stronger and more inclusive culture throughout the Bureau.

The Budget makes these smart investments while also reducing deficits and improving our countryís long-term fiscal outlook.


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