Study details lockup of western lands

The U.S. government has declined to lease millions of acres of western lands with vast quantities of oil and natural gas potential, a petroleum industry study said. It found that access to federal lands in eight western states has declined by more than 60% since 1983. About 32.5 million acres, or less than 17% of the total federal mineral acreage, is under lease today, compared with 114 million acres, or 72% in 1983.

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