Gulf bidders aim at deep gas blocks on shelf

Two-thirds of the tracts bid at Central Gulf of Mexico Sale 185 on Mar. 19 were for shelf blocks, many of them believed prospective for gas below 15,000 ft.The US Minerals Management Service said companies bid for 561 of the 4,460 blocks offered. The 793 bids totaled $414.7 million from 74 companies.A group led by Hunt Petroleum (AEC) Inc. bid $8.2 million, the sale's high bid, for South Marsh Island South Addition Block 109 in shallow water near several gas fields.Five of the top 10 highest bids were for shelf or shelf-edge blocks (see table).Kerr-McGee Oil & Gas Corp. topped the most active bidders' list with 63 high bids totaling $28.2 million. Newfield Exploration Co. made 51 ...

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