Oil, gas companies bid $244 million for Gulf of Mexico federal leases

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BATON ROUGE, La. (LMOGA) - Oil and gas companies pushed high bids at approximately $244 million for federal leases in the Gulf of Mexico during a sale on Wednesday.

The lease sale resulted in a 37% increase in the total sum of the high bids submitted as compared to the August 2018 lease sale, which resulted in $178 million in high bids.

The sale included 78 million acres in the Western, Central, and Eastern planning areas of the Gulf.

The majority of the bids are in the deepwater Gulf as compared to the shallow water. As compared to the August 2018 lease sale, the number of deepwater bids increased by approximately 80% while shallow water bids decreased by 25%.

The Advocate reports that the highest single bids were Equinor Gulf of Mexico LLC's $24.5 million and Hess Corp’s $10.1 million.

The Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil & Gas Association said they are optimistic about the future of the Gulf of Mexico following the sale. They released the following statement after the sale:

"LMOGA has supported the Administration’s efforts to reduce offshore regulatory burdens without sacrificing safety or environmental protection. Louisiana has demonstrated we can produce the energy to fuel America while also maintaining the best hunting, fish and outdoor wildlife activities. BSEE’s regulatory reform initiatives are ensuring the Gulf of Mexico remains a cost-effective and competitive basin as oil and gas companies have options to invest anywhere in the world. As such, LMOGA fully supports a continued effort by the U.S. Department of Interior to consider royalty rate adjustments throughout the Gulf."

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