The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) transfered $115m to the US Treasury for revenue generated from the sale and auction of crude helium from the Federal Helium Reserve, a resource owned by the American people and managed by the BLM’s Amarillo, Texas, Field Office.
The transfer augments an earlier transfer of $100m for a total of $215m for the year of 2014. There were three helium sales and one helium auction in fiscal year 2014. These sales were executed in accordance with the Helium Stewardship Act of 2013, which revitalised the Federal Helium Program and provided for market-based pricing and competitive auctions for the duration of the program. The Federal program will cease to exist when either three billion cubic feet of helium remain or on 30th September, 2021, whichever comes first.
The Federal Helium Reserve is the nation’s leading producer of crude helium for both the public and private sectors. Crude helium is an important resource for technology development and other important uses related to national defence, energy, medicine, industry, and space exploration. In 2014, the BLM’s crude helium plant satisfied approximately 70% of the US helium demand and over 22% of the world’s helium demand.