Indian Natural Resources--Part II:

Coal, Oil, and Gas--Better Management Can Improve Development and Increase Indian Income and Employment

RED-76-84: Published: Mar 31, 1976. Publicly Released: Feb 7, 1977.

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Indian income from oil and gas in fiscal year 1974 amounted to about $43.1 million. Indian income from other minerals, including a large amount from coal, amounted to about $9.6 million during the same period. There are opportunities to improve development of mineral resources, increase the economic benefits to the Indian people, and provide the Nation with increased energy sources. Such development can provide needed jobs and income to Indians living on or near reservations, a group with a high rate of unemployment.

The Bureau of Indian Affiars has placed limited emphasis on developing Indian coal, oil, and gas resources. Thirteen of the 16 Indian coal leases had fixed royalty rates and, therefore, the income per ton produced did not rise during periods of rising coal prices. The Geological Survey has not adequately fulfilled its responsibilities for mineral resource development on Indian reservations.

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