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Proposed Rule

National Petroleum Reserve, Alaska-Unitization

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Bureau of Land Management, Interior.


Proposed rule; notice of extension of public comment period.


The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) hereby gives notice that it is extending the public comment period on a Notice of Proposed Rule, which was published in the Federal Register on April 26, 2000 (54 FR 24542). The comment period for the proposed rule expires on June 26, 2000. The proposed rule would add a new subpart to BLM's oil and gas regulations implementing new statutory authority allowing operators to enter into unit agreements in the National Petroleum Reserve, Alaska (NPRA). Units allow for the sharing of costs and spreading of revenues among several leases, and allow for production from unit leases to occur without regard to lease or property boundaries. The rule would also allow for waiver, suspension, or reduction of rental or royalty for NPRA leases; allow for suspension of operations and production for NPRA leases; amend existing regulatory language to set the primary lease term for an NPRA lease at 10 years. Current regulations allow 10 years, or a shorter term if it is in the notice of sale; and add a new subpart to the NPRA regulations on subsurface storage agreements. Subsurface storage agreements allow operators to store gas in existing geologic structures on Federal lands.

This proposal would also make it clear that existing suspension regulations would not apply to the NPRA. In response to requests from the public, BLM is extending the comment period to August 10, 2000.


Submit comments by August 10, 2000.


Mail: Director (630), Bureau of Land Management, Administrative Record, Room 401 LS, 1849 C Street, NW, Washington, DC 20240. Personal or messenger delivery: Room 401, 1620 L Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036. Internet e-mail: (Include “Attn: AD13”).

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Erick Kaarlela of BLM's Fluid Minerals Group at (202) 452-0340 or Ian Senio of BLM's Regulatory Affairs Group at (202) 452-5049.

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If you wish to comment, you may submit your comments by any one of several methods. You may mail comments to Director (630), Bureau of Land Management, Room 401 LS, 1849 C Street, NW, Washington, DC 20240. You may deliver comments to Room 401, 1620 L Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036. You may also comment via the Internet to Please submit Internet comments as an ASCII file avoiding the use of special characters and any form of encryption. Please also include “Attn: AD13” and your name and return address in your Internet message. If you do not receive a confirmation that we have received your Internet message, contact us directly at (202) 452-5030. Please make your written comments on the proposed rule as specific as possible, confine them to issues pertinent to the proposed rule, and explain the reason for any changes you recommend. Where possible, your comments should reference the specific section or paragraph of the proposal that you are addressing. BLM may not necessarily consider or include in the Administrative Record for the final rule comments that BLM receives after the close of the comment period (see DATES) or comments delivered to an address other than those listed above (see ADDRESSES). Comments, including names and street addresses of respondents, will be available for public review at the address listed under “ADDRESSES: Personal or messenger delivery” during regular business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.), Monday through Friday, except holidays. Individual respondents may request confidentiality, which we will honor to the extent allowable by law. If you wish to withhold your name or address, except for the city or town, you must state this prominently at the beginning of your comment. We will make all submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, available for public inspection in their entirety.

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Dated: June 20, 2000.

Michael Schwartz,

Group Manager, Regulatory Affairs Group.

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[FR Doc. 00-15959 Filed 6-23-00; 8:45 am]