Governor Advocates for Wyoming Energy Sector Before Senate Committee

April 27, 2021

CHEYENNE, Wyo. – During testimony before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee today, Governor Mark Gordon stressed the importance of oil and gas leasing on federal lands in Wyoming, and emphasized that the current moratorium is both unnecessary and discriminatory.

“This leasing ‘review’ is a crafty way of establishing a moratorium on federal lease sales, making continued progress ever more tenuous, more difficult, and more likely that good paying, family supporting jobs will migrate somewhere else,” the Governor told the Committee. “That is bad for this country, for the climate, and especially for Wyoming.”

The Governor was invited to testify by Wyoming Senator John Barrasso, Ranking Member of the Committee. Governor Gordon noted that Wyoming ranks first in natural gas production on public lands and second in oil, and that this production is vital to the funding of schools, health care, public safety and other essential services. Total energy related revenues from public lands in Wyoming generated $457 million last fiscal year. Approximately $5.7 million of that was due to lease sales, but Wyoming has seen no lease sale revenues this year because of the moratorium.

Governor Gordon pointed out that federal lands in Wyoming are not over-leased and that the state has worked to minimize surface disturbance and protect migration corridors for pronghorn and mule deer as well as Greater sage-grouse habitat. In response to a question from Senator Angus King of Maine, the Governor said that Wyoming is working to upskill its workforce, but it's important that the process takes place over a period of time.

“Doing something as extraordinarily draconian as we are with the policies of this administration doesn’t give us time to evolve,” Governor Gordon said.

The Governor's oral testimony may be viewed here.