WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 3 -- The US Minerals Management Service has taken the first step toward expanding its regulation of Outer Continental Shelf energy activities beyond oil and gas.
MMS published an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking in the Dec. 28, 2005, Federal Register of a program to regulate alternative energy activities, such as generation of electricity from wind or ocean waves, on the OCS.
The action comes under an Energy Policy Act of 2005 provision authorizing DOI and BLM to grant leases, entitlements, and rights-of-way on the OCS for development and support of energy resources other than oil and gas and to allow for alternate uses of existing facilities on the OCS.
The law, which Congress passed late last summer, directs MMS to develop a comprehensive program and regulations to implement this new authority by mid-2006.
MMS is seeking comments through Feb. 28 on five areas that it considers integral to the program's development: access, environment, operations, finances, and coordination.
Contact Nick Snow at [email protected].