Interior Department’s Minerals Management Service (MMS) is extending the public comment period for the call for information and notice of intent to prepare an environmental impact statement on a proposed lease sale for off the coast of Virginia in 2011. The comment period was due to close on Dec. 29, but it has been extended to Jan. 13. This is the first lease sale that MMS has proposed off the East Coast in nearly three decades. The proposed sale area, which is at least 50 miles offshore and covers 2.9 million acres in water depths of 100 feet to 10,000 feet, is believed to contain 1.14 Tcf of natural gas and 130 MMbbl of crude oil, according to the agency.

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