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New US Oil and Gas Lease Auctions To Begin 26 August

The US Interior Department will auction oil and gas drilling rights on 535,000 acres of federal land—an area roughly twice the size of Los Angeles—over the next 6 weeks as part of its first oil and gas lease sales since March. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will begin a series of nine lease sales nationwide beginning 26 August, auctioning access to minerals in 13 states from Nevada to Michigan. Lease sales scheduled through the end of September will affect land in Alabama, Colorado, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming.

Amid the coronavirus pandemic and economic turmoil in the fossil energy industry, the BLM canceled all oil and gas lease sales it had previously scheduled for the summer.

The planned summer lease sales were to take place in states across the West, including Colorado, where the last federal lease sale was held 26 March. The leases in that sale either received no bids or sold for the lowest possible price of $2.00 per acre.

Wyoming sold the most parcels—75 of 105 offered—during the online first-quarter sale, according to online marketplace EnergyNet, raising approximately $3.3 million for parcels totaling about 71,689 acres.

Other first-quarter lease results were as follows.

  • Colorado—nine parcels covering 10,415 acres, with total high bids of $66,140
  • Nevada—two parcels covering 1,223 acres, with total high bids of $2,446
  • Montana—eight parcels covering 5,181 acres, with total high bids of $28,326
  • BLM Eastern States Office—three parcels covering 322 acres, with total high bids of $11,863
  • Utah—22 parcels covering 28,492 acres, with total high bids of $237,583

By comparison, the BLM generated a record $1.1 billion from 28 oil and gas lease sales in fiscal year 2018.

New US Oil and Gas Lease Auctions To Begin 26 August

24 August 2020

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