Chevron and Exxon dominate US Gulf of Mexico lease sales

A US auction of oil leases in the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday resulted in sales worth more than $190m. Top bidders were Chevron, Anadarko, BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon. Approximately 1.7m acres sold from the available 80m acres. While Chevron topped the list of spenders, Exxon bought the most acreage, winning almost a third of the tracts sold.

The lease sale was court-ordered. President Biden’s administration paused oil and gas lease sales in January this year, shortly after Biden took office. However, 13 states sued, saying that the White House had bypassed bureaucratic steps, and in June a judge agreed, leading to this week’s auction. An appeal of the judge’s decision is pending.

Department of the Interior spokesperson Melissa Schwartz said the agency is “conducting a more comprehensive analysis of greenhouse gas impacts from potential oil and gas lease sales than ever before.”

Environmental groups are calling on Biden to reform the leasing program.

The average price per acre was around $112, which compares with an average $233 achieved in a Gulf of Mexico auction last year.

Kim Biggar

Kim Biggar started writing in the supply chain sector in 2000, when she joined the Canadian Association of Supply Chain & Logistics Management. In 2004/2005, she was project manager for the Government of Canada-funded Canadian Logistics Skills Committee, which led to her 13-year role as communications manager of the Canadian Supply Chain Sector Council. A longtime freelance writer, Kim has contributed to publications including The Forwarder, 3PL Americas, The Shipper Advocate and Supply Chain Canada.
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