NEW ORLEANS – The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has announced that it will offer approximately 47 million acres offshore Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama for oil and gas exploration and development in a lease sale that will include all available unleased areas in the Central Planning Area (CPA) of the Gulf of Mexico.
Proposed Central Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 247, scheduled to take place in New Orleans in March 2017, will be the twelfth offshore sale under the Administration’s Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 2012-2017 (Five Year Program).
Lease Sale 247 will include approximately 8,878 blocks, located from three to about 230 miles offshore, in water depths ranging from nine to more than 11,115 ft (3 to 3,400 m). The BOEM says that the sale will build on eleven sales, already held in the current Five Year Program, that have netted more than $3 billion to date.
The proposed terms of the sale include conditions to ensure both orderly resource development and protection of the human, marine and coastal environments. These include stipulations to protect biologically sensitive resources, mitigate potential adverse effects on protected species and avoid potential conflicts associated with oil and gas development in the region. BOEM says that its proposed economic terms include a range of incentives to encourage diligent development and ensure a fair return to taxpayers.
The BOEM also said that the terms and conditions outlined for Sale 247 in the Proposed Notice of Sale are not final. Different terms and conditions may be employed in the Final Notice of Sale, which will be published at least 30 days before the sale.
All terms and conditions for Central Sale 247 are detailed in the Proposed Notice of Sale information package, which is available at: http://www.boem.gov/Sale-247/. Copies of the PNOS maps can be requested from the Gulf of Mexico Region’s Public Information Unit at 1201 Elmwood Park Boulevard, New Orleans, LA 70123, or at 800-200-GULF (4853).
The Notice of Availability of the Proposed Notice of Sale will be available tomorrow for inspection in the Federal Register at: www.boem.gov/81-FR-63803/ and will be published in the Sept. 16, 2016 Federal Register.
The announcement of Lease Sale 247 follows on the announcement of Lease Sales 250 and 251, tentatively scheduled for 2018.