NEW REPORT: Closing the Dirty Energy GapReport from Friends of the Earth makes case for decoupling public services funding from federal fossil fuel leasing
WASHINGTON– Friends of the Earth released a new report today, showing that the federal government could cover decades worth of the state share of revenue from federal fossil fuel leasing with the money Republicans simply handed to corporate polluters in tax breaks. The report comes ahead of the Biden administration’s first public forum on the Executive Order pausing new oil and gas leasing on federal lands and waters.
While Republicans have parroted false industry arguments that ending new leasing on federal lands and waters will immediately decimate state and local public services, the report findings show the impact is neither as great or as insurmountable as they want us to believe. For example, one tax giveaway in the CARES Act, which a third of oil companies are likely to benefit from, is estimated to cost $80.032 billion. That is enough to replace New Mexico’s share of revenue from federal lands for over 68 years.
“The funding of public services must be decoupled from the federal fossil fuel leasing program in Western states,” the report reads. “As the boom-and-bust fossil fuel industry continues to decline, the federal government can and must develop a plan and direct resources to decouple state and local budgets from oil, gas, and coal revenue from extraction on federal lands.
We could cover state royalty revenue from the federal fossil fuel leasing program for decades with the amount thrown away on corporate giveaways during the Trump years, even if we use FY 2019, the record year in the last decade for state disbursements from onshore public lands, as a starting point.”