The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) said Tuesday it sold 13 of 16 available parcels in an oil and natural gas lease sale in the Green River District in east-central Utah.

Bonus bids were received on more than 13,700 acres in the quarterly lease sale, which totaled $702,774. Rental fees totaled another $20,692 and administrative fees of $1,950 were received. The average bid/acre price was a little more than $50, and the average bid/parcel was about $54,000. More than 80% of the parcels were sold and 73% of the acreage.

Sandy, UT-based Turner Petro Land submitted the highest total bid/acre at $510 and the highest per-parcel bid of $265,200 for Parcel 32A in the Green River formation. Overall, more than 18,700 acres were offered and slightly more than 13,795 acres drew bids.

All leases were issued with conditions that include limits on when drilling may occur and on restrictions on surface occupancy. “Once an operator proposes exploration or development on a BLM-issued lease, further environmental analysis is conducted to determine the site-specific need for various types of impact-limiting or mitigation measures,” a BLM spokesperson said.

Earlier this year, BLM proposed oil shale production in Wyoming, Utah and Colorado only would focus on research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) leases. The federal agency also reduced the available acreage to about 500,000 acres from nearly two million acres under an earlier plan (see Shale Daily, May 31).

More than 70% of the Green River formation oil shale resources lie beneath federal lands. BLM plans to seek public comments on a proposal to limit development to RD&D leases in Utah (252,181 acres); Wyoming (174,476 acres); and Colorado (35,308 acres).