| Wednesday, August 20, 2014 |
On Tuesday, August 19th, the Federal
Government opened 21 million acres off the Texas coast for oil and gas
drilling. The area includes sections
along the United States and Mexico nautical boarder, all of which were
previously off-limits to drilling companies.
The sale was held at the Superdome in New Orleans, and
was the sixth such sale under President Obama’s current leasing plan. The plan extends through 2017.
Under the plan, the federal government offered over 60
million acres for development, and has already generated over $2 billion in bid
revenues through sales thus far. During
the most recent sale in March, in fact, oil and gas companies bid over $872
million for areas that span nearly two million acres in the central Gulf of
Generally, sales in the Western Gulf of Mexico cover a
significantly smaller area, and tend to generate less revenue.
On Tuesday, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
accepted closed bids, and stated that fourteen companies had submitted 93 bids
on 81 gas and oil tracts.
This sale offers 4,026 total tracts, and is the first to
offer acreage in this particular area. The agreement reached in 2013 set up a framework for companies to
collaborate with Pemex, Mexico’s state-owned gas and oil company, to develop