Oil and Gas: Interior's Restructuring Challenges in the Aftermath of the Gulf Oil Spill

GAO-11-734T Published: Jun 02, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 02, 2011.
Jump To:
Skip to Highlights

The Department of the Interior oversees oil and gas activities on leased federal lands and waters. Revenue generated from federal oil and gas production is one of the largest nontax sources of federal government funds, accounting for about $9 billion in fiscal year 2009. Since the April 2010 explosion on board the Deepwater Horizon, Interior has been in the midst of restructuring the bureaus that oversee oil and gas development. Specifically, Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) oversees onshore federal oil and gas activities; the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement (BOEMRE)--created in May 2010--oversees offshore oil and gas activities; and the newly established Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR) is responsible for collecting royalties on oil and gas produced from both onshore and offshore federal leases. Prior to BOEMRE, the Minerals Management Service's (MMS) Offshore Energy and Minerals Management Office oversaw offshore oil and gas activities and revenue collection. In 2011, GAO identified Interior's management of oil and gas resources as a high risk issue. GAO's work in this area identified challenges in five areas: (1) reorganization, (2) balancing responsibilities, (3) human capital, (4) revenue collection, and (5) development of existing leases.

Full Report

GAO Contacts