Today, U.S. Sens. Mary L. Landrieu (D-La.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) will introduce bipartisan legislation -- the Fixing America's Inequities with Revenues (FAIR) Act -- to ensure all energy producing states receive a fair share of the revenues they help produce.
While onshore producing states keep 50 percent of royalties, rents and bonus bids; offshore producing states receive virtually nothing. The FAIR Act aims to address this inequity by authorizing 37.5 percent of revenues for all offshore energy producing states, regardless the type of energy produced. States that produce renewable energy on federal lands within their borders would keep 50 percent of revenues, just as they currently do for traditional energy. It would also gradually lift the current congressionally mandated $500 million annual cap on revenues kept by Gulf Coast producing states.
"For decades, coastal energy producing states have faced a glaring inequity in federal energy policy that allows onshore producing states to keep 50 percent of revenues, while offshore producing states, like Louisiana and Alaska, keep virtually nothing. This is about justice for the coast and jobs for America. That is why I'm joining with Sen. Lisa Murkowski to introduce bipartisan, commonsense legislation to ensure a fair share of revenues for all energy producing states," Sen. Landrieu said.
"Revenue sharing is important for the coastal communities that will have increased demands on their infrastructure and public services from offshore development. It's only fair that these communities share in the revenues from the resources produced off their shores -- regardless of whether that is oil and gas or wind and tidal energy. I'm also excited at the potential of encouraging development of renewable energy projects onshore by expanding the existing revenue sharing program for onshore states," Sen. Murkowski said.
The FAIR Act:
Strengthens the partnerships between federal and state governments: Coastal energy producing states that produce any form of energy in the Outer Continental Shelf, whether oil, gas, or renewable wind or wave energy, will keep up to 37.5 percent of all revenues produced from that offshore energy production.
Treats onshore renewable energy production equally: States that produce renewable energy onshore (solar, wind, etc.) on federal lands within their borders will keep 50 percent of the revenues from energy production to match the 50 percent already shared from oil, gas and coal production.
Fixes inequity between coastal and interior energy producing states: Interior states currently keep 50 percent of the oil, natural gas and coal mineral payments (royalties, bonus and rentals) generated from energy production on federal lands within their states. However, coastal states keep virtually nothing. Alaska and the Atlantic Seaboard states have no partnership with the federal government to keep revenues generated from their offshore energy production that is produced for our nation.
Lifts cap on GOMESA states, accelerates payments: The cap mandated by the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act will be gradually lifted, and phase two of GOMESA will be accelerated to 2013.