Senate Appropriations panel expected to keep oil and gas research

The Senate Committee on Appropriations Thursday is expected to concur with House legislation that would restore government oil and gas research funding levels to historical levels. The bill is expected to move to the full Senate for consideration in mid-July when Lease Sale 181 and other controversial items are likely to be addressed.


Maureen Lorenzetti
OGJ Online

WASHINGTON, DC, June 28 -- The Senate Committee on Appropriations Thursday is expected to concur with House legislation that would restore government oil and gas research funding levels to historical levels.

Congressional sources said the committee is expected to mirror language approved by the House that would give $56 million to the Department of Energy's fossil energy program for oil research and development, a $26 million increase from the White House's request, and $1 million above the 2001 fiscal year funds.

For gas, $40 million is earmarked, $19 million over the White House request but $5 million below last year's spending levels (OGJ Online, June 21, 2001).

Senators are not expected to address controversial items like the controversial Lease Sale 181, planned for the eastern Gulf of Mexico in December, until the legislation reaches the floor in mid-July, Congressional sources said.

The pending Senate bill includes a provision in the House legislation that extended a decades-old moratorium that blocks federal spending to plan offshore lease sales off the entire US coastline except parts of the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska.

Contact Maureen Lorenzetti at maureenl@ogjonline.com

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