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New central GOM lease sale a far cry from 2008 record-breaker

Posted on 20 March 2009

The highest bid received in on a tract in Sale 208 was more than $65.6 million, submitted by Shell Gulf of Mexico for Mississippi Canyon, Block 721. The operator had a total of $153.63 million in 39 high bids in this round.

A total of 13 tracts in the “181 South Area” of the Central Gulf of Mexico received bids, with the high bids totaling $6,476,545. The states of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas will share in 37.5% of the high bids on these tracts, as well as all future revenues generated from this acreage leased today in the “181 South Area.” In addition, 12.5% of revenues from these tracts will go into the Land and Water Conservation Fund to enhance parklands and for other conservation projects.

Other top bidders in this sale included BP ($77.5 million in high bids); Marathon Oil ($62.4 million); Noble Energy ($55.4 million); BHP Billiton Petroleum ($50.4 million); Statoil Gulf of Mexico ($49.3 million); Repsol E&P ($48.5 million); ExxonMobil ($24.5 million); Chevron ($22.4 million); and Ecopetrol America ($20.6 million).

Each high bid on a tract will go through an evaluation process before a lease is awarded.

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