Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), Central and Western Gulf of Mexico, Oil and Gas Lease Sales for Years 2007-2012
This Call for Information and Nominations (hereinafter referred to as ``Call'') is the initial step in a single multisale process covering all lease sales in the Central and Western Gulf of Mexico (GOM) planning areas included in the draft proposed 2007-2012 OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program (see Federal Register, February 10, 2006, pages 7064-7068.) Eleven lease sales are specifically covered by this Call: six in the Central GOM and five in the Western GOM. The new configuration of the Central and Western GOM planning areas was announced in the draft proposed 2007-2012 OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program. The Central GOM planning area related to this Call includes portions of areas previously included in the Eastern and Western GOM planning areas. Simultaneously with this Call, MMS is preparing a multisale Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) covering the same eleven sales in the Central and Western GOM. For each of the eleven individual lease sales associated with this Call, the MMS will comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA), and the Coastal Zone Management Act.
Notice on Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Lease Sales
Pursuant to the authority vested in the Director of the Minerals Management Service by the joint bidding provisions of 30 CFR 256.41, each entity within one of the following groups shall be restricted from bidding with any entity in any other of the following groups at Outer Continental Shelf oil and gas lease sales to be held during the bidding period May 1, 2006 through October 31, 2006. The List of Restricted Joint Bidders published in the Federal Register November 7, 2005 covered the period November 1, 2005 through April 30, 2006.
Royalty Policy Committee-Notice of Renewal
Following consultation with the General Services Administration, notice is hereby given that the Secretary of the Interior is renewing the Royalty Policy Committee. The Royalty Policy Committee will provide advice related to the performance of discretionary functions under the laws governing the Department of the Interior's management of Federal and Indian mineral leases and revenues. The Committee will review and comment on revenue management and other mineral-related policies and provide a forum to convey views representative of mineral lessees, operators, revenue payors, revenue recipients, governmental agencies, and the interested public.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Submitted for Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Review; Comment Request
To comply with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), we are notifying the public that we have submitted to OMB an information collection request (ICR) to renew approval of the paperwork requirements in the regulations under 30 CFR part 202Royalties and part 206Product Valuation. This notice also provides the public a second opportunity to comment on the paperwork burden of these regulatory requirements. The title of this ICR is ``30 CFR part 202 Royalties, subpart CFederal and Indian Oil, and subpart JGas Production From Indian Leases; and part 206Product Valuation, subpart BIndian Oil, and subpart EIndian Gas.'' The title reflects the previous consolidation of portions of six ICRs relating to Indian oil and gas leases. The six ICRs were previously titled: 1010-0061: 30 CFR part 206, subpart BIndian Oil, Sec. 206.55Determination of Transportation Allowances (Form MMS-4110, Oil Transportation Allowance Report). 1010-0075: 30 CFR part 206, subpart EIndian Gas, Sec. 206.178How do I determine a transportation allowance? (Form MMS-4295, Gas Transportation Allowance Report), and Sec. 206.180How do I determine an actual processing allowance? (Form MMS-4109, Gas Processing Allowance Summary Report). 1010-0095: 30 CFR part 206Product Valuation, Subpart B Indian Oil, Sec. 206.54; subpart CFederal Oil, Sec. 206.109; subpart DFederal Gas, Sec. Sec. 206.156 and 206.158; and Subpart E Indian Gas, Sec. 206.177 (Form MMS-4393, Request to Exceed Regulatory Allowance Limitation).
Oil and Gas and Sulphur Operations in the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), 30 CFR 250 Subpart A, General-Data Release and Definitions
This final rule will revise certain existing definitions, clarify the basis upon which the Regional Director invokes the requirement for an archaeological survey on a lease area, add notification requirements on production status of wells, and update both public information and Information Collection sections. MMS recently redesigned and renamed some of its forms to streamline data submission. MMS also discovered inconsistent practices in first production reporting, which is a prime parameter in determining inspection and testing schedules for safety system devices. This final rulemaking will update the regulations to correspond to recently revised forms, provide clarity and explanation of definitions and forms, and clarify the requirements for first production notices.
Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Scientific Committee (SC); Announcement of Plenary Session
The OCS Scientific Committee will meet at the Hotel Mar Monte in Santa Barbara, California.
Oil and Gas and Sulphur Operations in the Outer Continental Shelf-Incident Reporting Requirements
This final rule revises the MMS requirements for reporting incidents associated with Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) oil and gas and sulphur operations. The revisions will clarify the requirements, and provide more precise definitions and reporting timeframes. This will result in a more consistent incident reporting program and the collection of more reliable incident information.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request
To comply with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), MMS is inviting comments on a collection of information that we will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval. The information collection request (ICR) concerns the paperwork requirements in the regulations under 30 CFR 254, ``Oil-Spill Response Requirements for Facilities Located Seaward of the Coast Line.''
Reporting and Paying Royalties on Federal Leases on Takes or Entitlements Basis
The MMS requests comments and suggestions to assist us in proposing regulations regarding so-called ``takes versus entitlements'' reporting and payment of royalties when oil and gas production is commingled upstream of the point of royalty measurement.
Gulf of Mexico, Outer Continental Shelf, Western Planning Area, Oil and Gas Lease Sale 200 (2006) Environmental Assessment
The Minerals Management Service (MMS) is issuing this notice to advise the public, pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), as amended, 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq., that MMS has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) for proposed Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) oil and gas Lease Sale 200 in the Western Gulf of Mexico (GOM) (Lease Sale 200) scheduled for August 2006. Proposed Lease Sale 200 is the fifth Western Planning Area (WPA) lease sale scheduled in the Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program: 2002-2007 (5-Year Program, OCS EIS/EA MMS 2002-006). The preparation of this EA is an important step in the decisionmaking process for Lease Sale 200. The proposal for Lease Sale 200 (the offering of all available unleased acreage in the WPA) and its alternatives (the proposed action excluding the unleased blocks near biologically sensitive topographic features and no action) were identified by the MMS Director in January 2002 following the Call for Information and Nominations/Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and were analyzed in the Gulf of Mexico OCS Oil and Gas Lease Sales: 2003-2007; Central Planning Area Sales 185, 190, 194, 198, and 201; Western Planning Area Sales 187, 192, 196, and 200Final Environmental Impact Statement; Volumes I and II (Multisale EIS, OCS EIS/EA MMS 2002-052). The Multisale EIS analyzed the effects of a typical WPA lease sale by presenting a set of ranges for resource estimates, projected exploration and development activities, and impact-producing factors for any of the proposed WPA lease sales. The level of activities projected for proposed Lease Sale 200 falls within these ranges. In this EA, which tiers from the Multisale EIS and incorporates that document by reference, MMS reexamined the potential environmental effects of the proposed action and its alternatives based on any new information regarding potential impacts and issues that were not available at the time the Multisale EIS was prepared. No new significant impacts were identified for proposed Lease Sale 200 that were not already assessed in the Multisale EIS. As a result, MMS determined that a supplemental EIS is not required and prepared a Finding of No New Significant Impact (FONNSI).
Notice of Availability of the Proposed Notice of Sale for Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Oil and Gas Lease Sale 200 in the Western Gulf of Mexico (GOM)
The MMS announces the availability of the proposed Notice of Sale for proposed Sale 200 in the Western GOM OCS. This Notice is published pursuant to 30 CFR 256.29(c) as a matter of information to the public. With regard to oil and gas leasing on the OCS, the Secretary of the Interior, pursuant to section 19 of the OCS Lands Act, provides the affected States the opportunity to review the proposed Notice. The proposed Notice sets forth the proposed terms and conditions of the sale, including minimum bids, royalty rates, and rentals.