NEW ORLEANS – The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has reported that Lease Sale 249 garnered $121,143,055 in high bids for 90 tracts covering 508,096.16 acres in the Gulf of Mexico’s Western, Central and Eastern planning areas.
Twenty-seven companies submitted 99 bids. The sum of all bids totaled $137,006,181.
Shell Offshore Inc. submitted 19 high bids totaling $25,096,163. Its highest bid, $4,500,725, was for Keathley Canyon block 214.
Chevron U.S.A. Inc. submitted 15 high bids totaling $27,917,668. Its highest bid, $5,683,116, was for Alaminos Canyon block 814.
Exxon Mobil Corp. submitted seven high bids totaling $20,385,425. Its highest bid, $10,800,775, was for Mississippi Canyon block 779.
TOTAL E&P USA Inc. submitted six high bids totaling $16,799,283. Its and the sale’s highest bid, $12,100,717, was for Garden Banks block 1003.
Anadarko US Offshore LLC submitted 10 high bids totaling $10,601,373. Its highest bid, $3,801,680, was for Mississippi Canyon block 40.
Statoil Gulf of Mexico LLC submitted four high bids totaling $4,999,904.
LLOG Bluewater Holdings, L.L.C. submitted six high bids totaling $2,649,279.
Apache Deepwater LLC submitted one high bid totaling $1,1718,090.
BP Exploration & Production Inc. submitted three high bids totaling $1,663,253.
LLOG Exploration Offshore, L.L.C. submitted three high bids totaling $1,604,659.
Houston Energy, L.P. submitted seven high bids totaling $444,976.
Ridgewood Energy Corp. submitted five high bids totaling $1,422,189.
Ecopetrol America Inc. submitted four high bids totaling $460,000.
William Turner, senior research analyst at Wood Mackenzie, pointed out that 76 of the 90 blocks receiving bids were in deepwater (400+ m or 1,312 ft depth).
Turner said: “Deepwater blocks won the day today, with 76 blocks receiving 98% of high bid value at $118 million. The deepwater industry is emphasizing short-cycle, low-risk prospects above high-impact, wildcat drilling. Today we saw operators continue to focus on areas near existing infrastructure with a majority of bids close to existing hubs or appraised developments.
“However, bids from Chevron, Shell, and Total near pre-FID discoveries, Guadalupe and North Platte, were a vote of confidence in higher-risk, standalone developments with potential for higher rewards.”
National Ocean Industries Association PresidentRandall Luthi added: “While the results of today’s Gulf of Mexico oil and gas lease sale reflect market realities, they also demonstrate the offshore oil and gas industry’s commitment to the US Gulf of Mexico, even with extended low commodity prices and lingering regulatory dysfunction.
“Industry has continually demonstrated a commitment to providing tremendous economic and energy benefits for our nation, despite the fact that unwise energy policies have closed over 94% of US offshore areas to leasing and exploratory activities. Offshore lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico contributed $80 billion to the US Treasury between 2005 and 2014 alone…”