Trump Gives Backdoor Bailout To Major Polluter With Shady Past 

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Chesapeake Energy, Main Beneficiary of BLM’s Lease Suspensions, Has Been Fined Nearly $14 Million In Environmental Penalties and $25 Million For Racketeering

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – One of the largest beneficiaries of a new pro-industry Interior Department policy is an energy company with a long list of environmental violations and has been penalized for racketeering, according to a new report from Politico.

The new policy allows oil and gas companies to pause their leases without paying rent to the government, which amounts to a massive give away to industry. Of the 69 leases that benefit from the policy in Wyoming, Chesapeake Exploration was the majority owner of 67 of the leases.

Chesapeake Accused Of Environmental Violations

Chesapeake Energy — the parent company of Chesapeake Exploration — has been assessed $13.8 million in environmental violations since 2000. Some of the biggest fines were for Clean Water Act violations after Chesapeake was caught illegally dumping waste, hurting streams and wetlands. Chesapeake was also required to pay a $25 million penalty in Michigan after it conspired with another oil company to avoid bidding wars in 2015.

“Corporate polluters are cashing on the coronavirus pandemic while the rest of the country is just struggling to survive thanks to another corrupt decision by the Trump administration,” said Kyle Herrig, president of Accountable.US. “This administration is working harder for corporate special interests than he is for the millions of Americans who are struggling to make ends meet.”

How To Apply For Reduced Royalty Rates

In April, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued guidance to public lands oil and gas drillers on how to apply for reduced royalty rates or lease suspensions during the COVID-19 pandemic, thereby allowing companies that drill on public lands to pause their leases rent-free.

Click here to learn more about the subject of this release.


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About the Author

Jacob Wolinsky
Jacob Wolinsky is the founder of ValueWalk.com, a popular value investing and hedge fund focused investment website. Jacob worked as an equity analyst first at a micro-cap focused private equity firm, followed by a stint at a smid cap focused research shop. Jacob lives with his wife and four kids in Passaic NJ. - Email: jacob(at)valuewalk.com - Twitter username: JacobWolinsky - Full Disclosure: I do not purchase any equities anymore to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest and because at times I may receive grey areas of insider information. I have a few existing holdings from years ago, but I have sold off most of the equities and now only purchase mutual funds and some ETFs. I also own a few grams of Gold and Silver

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