The Biden administration will sell oil and gas leases on public lands and waters later this year, it said in court documents Wednesday. The move complies with a court order to resume leasing while the administration’s pause on public lands and waters leases is litigated. In a statement, DOI said it would move forward with sales in the Gulf of Mexico by the end of the month with a sale notice likely being issued in September. Environmental groups criticized the administration for complying with the order. “Given the urgency of the climate crisis, and the well-documented shortcomings of the leasing system,” Center for Western Priorities Policy Director Jesse Prentice-Dunn in a statement, [DOI Sec. Deb Haaland] must ensure that any public land leases that are put up for auction fully account for the costs that our children and grandchildren will have to pay.”

The announcement came the day after a new report outlined inadequate consultation with Native American tribes and the prioritization of oil and gas extraction over cultural sites in the Southwest. (Leasing resumption: E&E News, The Hill, Reuters, Washington Examiner; Native disregard: New Mexico Political Report)