On 25 April 2019, U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) Secretary David Bernhardt announced that the Department will disburse nearly $215 million in FY 2018 energy revenues to the four Gulf oil and gas producing states – Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, and their coastal political subdivisions (CPS) – an increase of 14.3 percent over the prior year. This represents the second disbursement under Phase II of the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act of 2006 (GOMESA).
The funds will be used to support coastal conservation and restoration projects, hurricane protection programs, and activities to implement marine, coastal, or conservation management plans.
“Under President Trump’s leadership, Interior continues to deliver on the promise of advancing American energy security and economic prosperity,” said Secretary Bernhardt. “These disbursements shared directly with the Gulf producing states and local communities are a direct result of the responsible development of our energy resources.”
“As one of the gulf states, it’s imperative that our diverse coastal areas are preserved for future generations to experience and enjoy. I appreciate the U.S. Department of Interior for disbursing this much needed GOMESA funding to Alabama, which will allow us to enhance our conservation, restoration and hurricane preparedness efforts on the Gulf Coast,” said Alabama Governor Kay Ivey.
“These funds will continue our efforts of years past to protect and enhance our beautiful Mississippi Gulf Coast,” said Mississippi Governor 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 their 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,” said Texas Governor 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.”
“This funding is critical to our efforts to restore and protect our coast and will allow the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority to construct hurricane protection and coastal restoration projects that will better protect our communities, help restore our coast, and make our state more resilient,” said Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards.
“Mississippi plays a critical role in meeting our nation’s energy needs,” said Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker. “This funding will ensure that the Gulf of Mexico’s energy revenue will be reinvested in our communities through conservation and restoration programs, enhancing our state’s natural resources.”
“GOMESA revenue is essential to restore and protect Louisiana’s coasts,” said Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy. “I thank the Trump administration for their support of this funding and will continue to work with them, and the entire Louisiana delegation, to preserve this important program.”
“Each year, Louisiana receives a portion of the revenue that the federal government derives from offshore drilling. This money is made off Louisiana’s coast, and it is used to battle coastal erosion. It’s no secret that our coastline is disappearing, threatening coastal families and jobs. This increase in funding will help us restore our wetlands and preserve Louisiana’s future,” said Louisiana Senator John Kennedy.
“Today’s announcement is welcome news for Louisiana families and communities. Revenues from oil and gas activity in the Gulf of Mexico are vital to restoring our coast and protecting coastal communities, which is why I’ve fought to protect this revenue sharing from attempts to raid it,” said House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (LA-01). “Through this revenue sharing, Louisiana will receive nearly $100 million to invest directly into vital coastal restoration and hurricane protection projects that provide greater security against strong Gulf storms and floods. American energy dominance will play an increasing role in the revenue sharing dollars coming to Louisiana, and I look forward to working with President Trump to support a robust energy strategy in the Gulf of Mexico which allows us to better protect the coast we love. I will also continue fighting every day to equalize the revenue sharing from offshore production with that from onshore drilling so that we can finally get our fair share of energy revenues generated off our coast.”
“This year, Louisiana will receive more than $94 million in GOMESA funding. This is a big win for our state and a result of continued efforts here in Congress to ensure Louisiana receives the greatest share possible from offshore revenues. The robust oil and gas industry in our state is key to America's economy and energy independence, and I will continue to do all I can to protect Louisiana's interests,” said Congressman Mike Johnson (LA-04).
“Energy producing states along the Gulf Coast have waited a long time to start getting a fair share of offshore energy revenues, especially in Louisiana – where the Gulf has eroded over 2,000 square miles of our coast,” said Congressman Garret Graves (LA-06). “Every single penny of this funding will be invested in urgent coastal restoration and hurricane protection efforts to protect Louisiana lives, communities, culture and a nationally-important economic engine responsible for 80 to 90 percent of all offshore energy production in federal waters in the United States.”
“The revenue generated from the oil and gas leases throughout the Gulf of Mexico play an extremely important role in protecting our Mississippi coastline,” said Congressman Steven Palazzo (MS-04). “I am glad to know that the legislation we worked to pass last Congress is already at work and ensuring that states receive higher portions of revenue from these leases. I am grateful for the Department’s efforts to see these GOMESA funds reach our state and fuel Mississippi’s blue economy.”
“I am excited about the GOMESA funds announced today to go towards our continuing coastal restoration and environmental protection efforts in Southwest Alabama,” said Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01). “I have consistently fought to protect this program to continue its outstanding record of providing important funding to the Gulf Coast. Our coastal counties are blessed with an amazingly diverse and important ecosystem, and it is up to us to take care of these natural resources. I will continue to be a strong advocate for this important program.”
GOMESA funds are derived from qualified oil and gas leasing revenues on the Outer Continental Shelf, and disbursed in accordance with the revenue-sharing provisions of the GOMESA legislation. During FY 2018, Interior’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR) disbursed approximately $76 million to the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and $309 million to the U.S. Treasury from bonuses, rentals, and royalties paid for GOMESA leases. As required by the legislation, disbursements to LWCF and Treasury are made in the same year of receipt; disbursements to the states and CPS are made the year following the year of receipt.
Revenue-sharing allocations and disbursement detail for the FY 2018 receipts were on the Department’s website.