BLM seeks comment on proposed oil production measurement rule update

The US Bureau of Land Management is seeking public comments on a proposed rule that would update and replace its regulations governing the measurement of oil produced from onshore federal and Indian leases.

The proposed changes reflect considerable changes in technology and industry practices that have occurred in the 25 years since Order No. 4, which contains existing requirements, was issued, BLM said in its notice in the Sept. 30 Federal Register.

“This proposed rule addresses the use of new oil meter technology, proper measurement documentation, and recordkeeping; establishes performance standards for oil measurement systems; and includes a mechanism for the BLM to review, and approve for use, new oil measurement technology and systems,” BLM said.

BLM said the proposed rule expands the acts of noncompliance that would result in an immediate assessment under the existing regulations. It also sets forth a process for the BLM US Department of the Interior agency to consider variances from these requirements.

“These updates address longstanding concerns about the adequacy of existing regulations and will help ensure that the oil produced from federal and Indian leases is properly measured and accounted for,” said Janice M. Schneider, assistant US Interior secretary for land and minerals manager.

“This is a critical component of ensuring that American taxpayers, Indian tribes and allottees, and states and local governments receive the full royalties they are due,” Schneider said.

Comments will be accepted through Nov. 30, BLM said.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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