With West Texas Intermediate Crude prices topping $70 a barrel, the Eagle Ford shale oil fields are expanding, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
The Bureau of Land Management said today it is opening ten parcels of land south of San Antonio for oil and gas activity. Eight of the parcels are in McMullen County and two are in Live Oak County.
Both counties are in the heart of the Eagle Ford, with McMullen County recently described as the 'richest county in America' due to fracking.
The BLM says the comment period for the oil and gas leasing rights on these parcels will begin next week. The sale of the rights to drill on the parcels is expected in December.
"The BLM will consider all substantive comments received during the public scoping period to ensure the potential environmental consequences are analyzed in a manner that allows the BLM to make an informed decision about the proposed competitive lease sale," the BLM said in a statement.
Expanded oil and gas drilling in the Eagle Ford not only decreases America's reliance on foreign oil and helps keep prices down at the gas pump, it is also a major boost for the Texas economy, and for the local economies in the counties where drilling is ongoing.