“During the past year we have held 32 onshore lease sales, offering more than 2.7 million acres in the West and generating more than $126 million in revenue for American taxpayers,” Salazar said. “Next year will be just as busy with 37 quarterly sales for Western public lands and the first sale in nearly two years for tracks in the northern reaches of the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. Our nation needs a balanced and appropriate use of our conventional and renewable energy resources. That means oil, gas and coal will continue to play an important role in our energy mix, as we develop and expand the use of wind, solar, geothermal and other renewable sources.”

The BLM’s Alaska State Office oil and gas lease sale will offer available tracts in the Northeast and a portion of the Northwest areas of the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. The sale is scheduled for August 11, 2010 in Anchorage, Alaska. The last sale for the Reserve was held September 24, 2008.

BLM conducts its quarterly lease sales based on nominations received from industry. These are evaluated to determine eligibility and availability for leasing before being delineated into individual parcels. A preliminary parcel list is sent to sister agencies, such as the National Park Service and US Fish and Wildlife Service, for review and recommendations on which parcels to offer.

Since January 2009, the BLM has held 32 onshore lease sales that offered 2,346 parcels, covering 2.7 million acres, and sold 1,212 of those for $126 million. BLM will hold four more lease sales this year, for a total of 36 for 2009.

Oil and gas leasing in the NPR-A is authorized under the Naval Petroleum Reserves Production Act of 1976, as amended. Integrated Activity Plan/Environmental Impact Statements have been prepared for both the Northeast and Northwest planning areas.