The auction includes all available unleased areas in the western gulf planning area for oil and gas exploration and development, covering 23.8 million acres located 9-250 nautical miles offshore Texas. It includes 4,399 blocks in 16-10,975 ft of water.
As a result of offering this area for lease, BOEM estimates a range of economically recoverable hydrocarbons to be discovered and produced of 116 million-200 million bbl of oil and 538-938 bcf of natural gas.
Sale 248 will be the 11th offshore sale in the gulf and the final sale for the western planning area under the Obama administration’s Outer Continental Shelf oil and gas leasing program for 2012-2017. BOEM says the sale builds on the first 10 in the current 5-year program, which offered more than 60 million acres and netted nearly $3 billion.
Leases issued from this sale will also be the first for which BOEM will accept requests for extended initial periods, and confirm whether the lessee has earned such extension, a task previously performed by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE).