Anderson Exploration highest bidder in Canadian lease sale

Anderson Exploration Ltd., Calgary, was the highest bidder in a Canadian sale of lands in the Mackenzie Delta and in the Beaufort Sea which attracted $466 million (Can.) in bids. The sale was held by the federal Northern Oil and Gas Directorate.


CALGARY�Anderson Exploration Ltd., Calgary, was the highest bidder in a Canadian sale of lands in the Mackenzie Delta and in the Beaufort Sea which attracted $466 million (Can.) in bids. The sale was held by the federal Northern Oil and Gas Directorate.

Anderson was the highest bidder on four parcels and was a joint bidder with Petro-Canada, Calgary, on two other parcels.

Petro-Canada and Anderson won rights to two blocks last September with a spending commitment of $105 million over 9 years. Anderson also obtained 267,000 acres in another land sale in April, making it a major landholder in the Arctic.

Anderson, a major natural gas producer, committed to spend $275 million within 5 years at the most recent sale. Company chairman J.C. Anderson said his company is preparing for the future, and he is impressed with the potential for large natural gas discoveries.

Canada�s National Energy Board estimates proven reserves in the Beaufort Sea and Mackenzie Delta at 9 tcf, with an additional potential of 55 tcf.

In the current sale, Shell Canada Ltd. acquired one block for $35 million. BP Canada Energy Co., Burlington Resources Inc., and Chevron Canada Resources Ltd. made a joint bid of $76.6 million for one parcel. Anadarko Canada Corp. won a single parcel with a bid of $2.4 million.

There is renewed interest in Arctic development this year as a result of high natural gas prices and forecast demand growth for the commodity, particularly in the US.

A group of four companies headed by Imperial Oil Ltd., Toronto, with substantial Mackenzie Delta reserves are studying feasibility of development and are expected to make a decision by yearend.

Pipeline companies, including TransCanada PipeLines Ltd., Westcoast Energy Inc., and Enbridge Inc., are considering the feasibility of a natural gas pipeline from the Arctic to southern markets. Most experts say completion of a line is at least 7 years away.

BP Amoco PLC is considering the feasibility of developing reserves of about 35 tcf at Prudhoe Bay on the Alaska North Slope.

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