The super-majors dominated the western GOM Lease Sale 207 as interest in deepwater exploration continues to be robust. Super-majors accounted for over half of all bidding. Lease Sale 207's $487 million in high bids translates to a record $267 per acre. This was the largest western GOM sale since 1998. Anadarko Petroleum Co. was the largest bidder among domestic oil and gas firms and was the sixth largest bidder overall. ExxonMobil Corp., BP Plc, Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron Corp., ConocoPhillips and Total SA dominated the sale, accounting for over half of all high bids. With over 130 high bids, ExxonMobil by itself comprised over a third of the total. Foreign firms were also active, primarily those from Europe. The highest bid belonged to StatoilHydro, which bid $61 million for Alaminos Canyon 380. Bidding by Asian firms was limited. With the exception of Anadarko, Hess Corp., and Devon Energy Corp., independents sat this sale out. Anadarko was also one of the most active bidders. This time it placed 28 bids (including one listed under Kerr-McGee) for $30 million. Twenty were high bids totalling $20 million. Most of the company's bidding centered around NW Nansen (EB 558, 602). The company was high bidder on a handful of blocks toward the southwestern corner of the Gulf, which is likely to be prospective for the lower tertiary trend. There were bids on 319 blocks out of 3,412 up for lease. Typically about 8% to 10% of the blocks up for lease receive bids. The bulk of the bidding occurred in the deepwater, especially around the southwestern corner of Garden Banks. Over 50 companies placed bids. The next lease sale is Central GOM Lease Sale 208, which is likely to be held in March 2009.
Oil futures edged up on Thursday as a drop in crude exports from OPEC's de facto leader, Saudi Arabia, and a draw in U.S. drilling rigs and oil inventories supported prices.
South Korea plans to boost the share of its energy output generated from renewable sources to as much as 35 percent by 2040, a draft revision to government policy showed on April 19, over four times the current amount.
BP and partners have sanctioned the Azeri Central East (ACE) project, the next stage of development of the giant Azeri-Chirag-Deepwater Gunashli (ACG) oilfield complex in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea.