Federally recognized Tribes are sovereign nations exercising government-to-government engagement with the United States. These engagements can take the form of either informal dialogue or legally required consultation. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) Tribal Liaison Officer serves as the bureau official for BSEE’s National Tribal Engagement Program and primary point of contact with Tribes, Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporations, and the Native Hawaiian Community.
BSEE actions on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) could have Tribal Implications. Tribal consultations can identify the cultural values, religious beliefs, traditional practices, and the legal rights of Indigenous Peoples that may be impacted by Federal actions, BSEE implements consultation policies through formal government-to-government consultations and informal dialogue, robust collaboration, and meaningful engagement. BSEE is committed to maintaining open and transparent communications with Tribal governments, ANCSA Corporations, the Native Hawaiian Community, and other Indigenous communities. BSEE emphasizes trust, respect, and shared responsibility as part of a deliberative process to promote effective collaboration, transparent, and informed decision-making.
The ancestors of today’s Tribes occupied vast areas of land and depended on nearby ocean resources, even prior to both sea level rise at the end of the last ice age and interaction with the U.S. government. BSEE activities are proposed and conducted in the OCS. Many Indigenous Peoples have historical and cultural ties to areas where BSEE activities are proposed and conducted although they may no longer be physically located near the area. It is important to note the impact that the history of Federal law and policy has had on Tribal access to ancestral lands. Policies such as the Indian Removal Act of 1830 resulted in mass removal of Native Americans from their lands. These types of actions continue to have long-lasting impacts on Tribes and their relationship with the Federal government.
Environmental Justice Strategy and Action Plan
BSEE is hosting informational sessions on its Environmental Justice Strategy and Action Plan for Tribal Nations, the Native Hawaiian, Community, and Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporations. The informational sessions are focused on receiving input on development of the first-ever Environmental Justice Strategy and Action Plan for the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE). We invite input and feedback on the four preliminary goals:
- Institutionalizing Environmental Justice: Cultivate bureau environmental justice competency and incorporate environmental justice considerations into bureau actions.
- Delivering Equity through Investments: Advance equitable access to federal procurement opportunities, resources, and other qualitative benefits.
- Reducing Burdens and Harms: Enhance compliance and enforcement actions to reduce impacts on communities with environmental justice concerns.
- Engaging in Meaningful Outreach: Foster opportunities for communities to participate as informed partners in bureau actions that are important to their wellbeing.
See the website below for Executive Order (EO) 14096, Revitalizing Our Nation’s Commitment to Environmental Justice for All https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2023/04/21/executive-order-on-revitalizing-our-nations-commitment-to-environmental-justice-for-all/
Informational Sessions Meeting dates are below.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email about joining the meeting.
For Tribal Nations: October 31, 2023
Time: 1:00pm EST
Registration Link: https://bseegov.zoomgov.com/meeting/register/vJIsdOqgqzkqEhRQqPw5olu4g0yEaSPwIn8
For Alaska Natives and ANCSA Corporations: October 31, 2023
Time: 11:00 AM Alaska Daylight Time / 03:00 PM Eastern Time
Registration Link: https://bseegov.zoomgov.com/meeting/register/vJIsfuCrrz4uGKphgvgRzKASoEiPv1xWCiU
Native Hawaiian Community Informational Session: November 2, 2023
Time: 10:00 AM Hawaii Standard Time / 4:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Registration Link: https://bsee-gov.zoomgov.com/meeting/register/vJiscOCqqToqHArSkiSbaGaB-gGqZQGnDPg
You may also provide written responses. We request all written responses be provided by November 3, 2023. Written comments can be provided to the following email BSEE National Tribal Engagement Program (NTEP) email@example.com.
Consultation Topics and Informational Sessions
Sub-part J Pipelines Rights-of-Way Rulemaking
The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) would like to invite you or your designee to participate in Government-to-Government consultations concerning an upcoming rulemaking that would propose to revise the existing regulations governing Pipelines and Pipeline Rights-of-Way. Please let us know if you have any questions or wish to engage in formal consultation by contacting BSEE’s National Tribal Engagement Program, firstname.lastname@example.org
Carbon Sequestration Rulemaking
The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management are developing a joint notice of proposed rulemaking to regulate activities related to carbon sequestration on the outer Continental Shelf (OCS). Please let us know if you have any questions or wish to engage in formal consultation by contacting BSEE’s Tribal Liaison Officer Jack Lorrigan email@example.com, (907) 334-5357. Mr. Lorrigan will share any information that you provide with both bureaus.
Directors Tribal Roundtable
June 26, 2023 – 2-5 PM EST
Purpose: The Tribal Roundtable will provide a forum to discuss the Bureau’s National Tribal Engagement Program, to learn of Tribal concerns and issues, and to assist in developing and maintaining government-to-government relationships with Tribal Nations. The purpose of this meeting is for the Director to fully convey his thoughts and ideas for the scope and direction of this initiative and have an open discussion with Tribal members. Please register in advance for this event.
Consultation Request: BSEE Proposed Rule Making
1014-AA-44 Oil-Spill Response Requirements for Facilities Located Seaward of the Coast Line
The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement would like to invite you or your designee to participate in Government-to-Government and Government to ANCSA Corporation consultations concerning an upcoming rulemaking that would apply to oil spill response requirements for facilities located seaward of the coastline. BSEE is initiating this rulemaking to address the regulatory gaps identified by multiple investigations and studies following the Deepwater Horizon incident. Additionally, the proposed rule would implement recommendations of those reports and studies to advance oil spill response best practices. We are able to meet at your convenience by or before May 15, 2023, please contact our Tribal Liaison Officer, Jack Lorrigan at 907-738-3743 or firstname.lastname@example.org to request a time to meet. Additional information regarding the AA-44 rule can be found in the consultation letters below.
AA-44 Request for Consultation Letters
Tribes and ANCSA Corporations were notified of BSEE’s proposed regulatory agenda on July 24, 2022. The notification can be reviewed below.
National Tribal Engagement Program
Tribes and ANCSA Corporations were notified of BSEE’s proposed National Tribal Engagement Program policy development in July 2022, followed by a request for Tribal and ANSCA Corporations' input on this endeavor in August 2022. BSEE is currently notifying Tribes and ANCSA Corporations of the final, The National Tribal Engagement Program Bureau Interim Directive that was signed October 27, 2022. Notification letters to the Tribes and ANCSA Corporations are below.
Initial Notification - Tribal Program Development
Request for Consultation - NTEP Policy Review
Final Signed Policy - NTEP BID Signed
Decommissioning of Oil and Gas Platforms in the Pacific Region
The purpose and need for this Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) is to support future Federal review of and action on decommissioning applications for platforms, pipelines, and other facilities offshore Southern California on the Pacific OCS. Currently, eight oil and gas platforms on the OCS offshore Southern California, near Point Conception and in the Santa Barbara Channel, no longer produce oil and gas and are located on terminated leases that no longer allow resumption of production. BSEE expects to receive decommissioning applications for these platforms and associated pipelines and other facilities in the near term. It is currently unknown when decommissioning may be initiated for the remaining 15 platforms, though by regulation an initial platform removal application must be submitted for Pacific OCS facilities at least two years before production is projected to cease.
Annual Tribal Consultation Report
Tribal Liaison Officer
Bronia E Ashford
Regional Tribal Liaisons
Pacific Regional Tribal Liaison
Gulf of Mexico Tribal Liaison
Alaska Regional Tribal and Community Liaison
Jennifer “Gigi” Modrich
Eastern Seaboard Tribal Liaison
Federal Preservation Officer
National Response Center Tribal Notifications
Tribes with NRC agreements in place will receive spill notifications based on selected incident criteria contained in the agreement application. To apply for an NRC Agreement, please email email@example.com or fax (202) 267-1322. Additional information can be found on the National Response Center website: https://www.epa.gov/emergency-response/national-response-center