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(l-r) Partners Marcella Burke, Nikesh Jindal and Ashley Parrish, of King & Spalding LLP. Courtesy photos

During the campaign, President-elect Joe Biden stated at times that his administration would seek to “ban” offshore drilling and hydraulic fracturing (also known as fracking) on federal land and would also try to impose a moratorium on offshore drilling. But he did not provide many specifics, including whether the new administration would proceed through executive orders or undertake notice-and-comment rulemaking. Because an outright ban on fossil fuel based production would be unlawful, the new administration may decide to create new regulatory mandates that could impede production efforts. While the details will matter, these policies should be subject to challenge on both substantive and procedural grounds.

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