Interior Department Disburses $215 Million to Coastal States

The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) has disbursed nearly $215 million in fiscal year 2018 energy revenues to the four Gulf Coast oil- and gas-producing states—Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas, and their coastal political subdivisions—an increase of $26.95 million, or 14.3%, over the previous year. The funds from the second distribution under phase two of the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act (GOMESA) of 2006 will be used to support coastal conservation and restoration projects, hurricane protection programs, and activities to implement marine, coastal, or conservation management plans.

“Louisiana’s cut of the nearly $215 million in total GOMESA funding that’s being doled out this week is the largest among states that are part of the revenue-sharing pact, as Louisiana has more oil platforms off its coast than the other three states,” writes Baton Rouge’s The Advocate newspaper. “Of Louisiana’s $94.7 million, about $75.8 million will go to state-level efforts. The remaining $18.9 million is directed to 19 coastal parishes in amounts rang- ing from $582,000 to more than $1.8 million.”

“These funds will continue our efforts of years past to protect and enhance our beautiful Mississippi Gulf Coast,” says Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant. “This latest disbursement of revenue generated by offshore energy exploration, as part of the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act, will initiate projects that continue to grow our blue economy. I appreciate our Mississippi congressional delegation for its hard work in securing this funding.”

“As the United States cements itself as the global leader in energy, GOMESA is providing enhanced revenue to Texas coastal communities,” adds Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. “This revenue will fund conservation, restoration, and hurricane-protection projects throughout the region and contribute to our mission of resiliency and disaster preparedness throughout Texas.”

(SOURCE: The Weekly Propane Newsletter, May 28, 2019)