Environmental groups are correct to note that industry has a lot of active APDs to develop. But industry is telling the truth when it says a complex set of timing and surface stipulations make it difficult to develop all of those leases in a timely fashion. Sage grouse and raptor nesting protections, for example, block a sizable portion of federal leases from being developed from March to June in Wyoming.
There is a backlog of APDs under analysis at the Bureau of Land Management.
But industry officials cross the line of reason when they assert that President Obama is purposefully and masterfully ratcheting up approved APD numbers while nullifying them with onerous and over-reaching stipulations behind the scenes.