US receives 61 bids for western Gulf lease sale

offshore oil rig28 August 2013, News Wires – The US Interior Department said it has received 61 bids from 12 different companies in advance of the Western Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 233 scheduled for Wednesday in New Orleans.

The bids cover 53 offshore blocks, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, BOEM, said in a statement. Nearly 21 million acres offshore Texas were made available in the auction for oil and gas exploration.

BOEM estimates Wednesday’s lease sale could result in the production of up to 200 million barrels of oil and 938 billion cubic feet of natural gas.

The lease sale, which will be held at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans starting at 9:00 am local time, offers up 3864 blocks between nine and 250 miles offshore, in water depths ranging from 16 feet to more than 10,975 feet.

The acreage includes all available unleased or non-protected areas in the Western Gulf of Mexico Planning Area.

It will be the third of 12 Gulf of Mexico sales under the Obama administration’s Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 2012-2017, and the second of five Western Gulf of Mexico lease sales that will be held under the programme, BOEM said.

A 39-million-acre sale in March netted almost $1.2 billion in high bids; a 20-million-acre sale held last November netted nearly $134 million.

– Upstream

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