"NEW ORLEANS — The U.S. Interior Department on Wednesday will auction vast oil reserves in the Gulf of Mexico estimated to hold up to 1.1 billion barrels of crude, the first such sale under President Joe Biden and a harbinger of the challenges he faces to reach climate goals that depend on deep cuts in fossil fuel emissions.
The livestreamed sale will invite energy companies to bid on drilling leases across some 136,000 square miles (352,000 square kilometers) — about twice the area of Florida.
It will take years to develop the leases before companies start pumping crude. That means they could keep producing long past 2030, when scientists say the world needs to be well on the way to cutting greenhouse gas emissions to avoid catastrophic climate change."