The Biden administration is preparing to auction off more than 80 million acres of the Gulf of Mexico to oil and gas drilling companies less than a week after the United Nations COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, Scotland, where global negotiations over plans to reduce fossil fuel emissions faced an official deadline on Friday.
The annual Gulf of Mexico lease sale planned for November 17 in New Orleans is the largest federal offshore drilling auction in United States history and comes just months after Hurricane Ida unleashed dozens of oil spills and petrochemical leaks from aging fossil fuel infrastructure near the Louisiana coast. On October 1, a ruptured underwater pipeline off the coast of California spilled an estimated 25,000 gallons of crude oil across ocean waters and beaches, the latest disaster to raise fears about the dangers of offshore drilling.
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