"Proposed Sale 225 is the first lease sale proposed for the eastern planning area under the 2012-17 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Natural Gas Leasing Program, and the first sale offering acreage in that area since Sale 224, held in March of 2008," the bureau announced Tuesday.
The oil and gas areas covered in the sale are spread out over 456,200 acres south of Alabama and west of Florida. Coastal states are entitled to a share of the revenue generated from a portion of the sales.
The bureau estimates development of the acreage could lead to the production of 710 million barrels of oil and 162 billion cubic feet of natural gas.
The Gulf of Mexico accounts for about 25 percent of domestic oil and 11 percent of domestic natural gas production. The first lease sales under the five-year plan generated $1.4 billion in bids.
"This proposed sale is another important step to promote responsible domestic energy production through the safe, environmentally sound exploration and development of the Nation's offshore energy resources," bureau Director Tommy Beaudreau said in a statement.
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