The Colorado division of the Bureau of Land Management
will offer 86,599 acres of federal land in an oral oil and gas lease auction on Aug. 9 at the BLM Colorado State Office in Lakewood. The sale includes a total of 109 parcels, including 75 parcels totaling 43,471 acres that are held in split-estate ownership. The BLM said it is notifying the public of the sale 60 days in advance, rather than the legally required 45-day notice. The auction rules call for a $2 per acre minimum bid in bonuses on any parcel plus an administrative fee of $130 per parcel. The buyer will pay the bid price for the right to obtain the federal lease, in addition to a standard $1.50 per acre rental for the first five years and $2.00 per acre thereafter. If and when a lease becomes producing, a royalty of 12.5% will be collected by the federal government. Leases are for a primary term of 10 years and "will continue beyond [their] primary term as long as oil or gas is produced in paying quantities," BLM said. Lynn Rust, Colorado BLM deputy state director, noted that "while energy development on Colorado's federal lands continues to play an important part in meeting our nation's energy needs, our focus is on smart planning and working with industry to use best practices to reduce environmental impacts on public and private lands." The complete list of parcels is available on the Colorado BLM website, http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/BLM_Programs/oilandgas/leasing.html
. Protests for the Aug. 9, oil and gas lease auction are due at the BLM Colorado State Office by 4 p.m. on July 25. The BLM has tentatively scheduled its next lease auction for Nov. 8.