The Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board announcedwinning bids on eleven parcels (about three million acres) in theNova Scotia offshore area last week. PanCanadian was the majorwinner with a position in six of the eleven parcels. PanCanadianmore than doubled its net land holdings. Its six parcels cover morethan 1.7 million gross acres. In total, PanCanadian holds interestson more than four million gross acres across both the shelf anddeep waters offshore Nova Scotia. “We see offshore Nova Scotia asone of the most promising exploration regions in North America.”With the additions “we have clearly established a core explorationarea for PanCanadian,” said PanCanadian CEO David Tuer. In the landsale, conducted by the Canada Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board,PanCanadian and its partners pledged to spend more than $48 millionon exploration over the next five years. Other winning biddersinclude Canadian 88 Energy Corp., Murphy Oil, Petro-Canada andRichland Minerals.

Pacific Gas and Electric CEO Gordon R. Smith warned a proposeddecision by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) of the CaliforniaPublic Utilities Commission (CPUC) on the company’s rate case couldforce the layoff of 3,500 employees. PG&E said the decision is”out of touch with the realities of providing the necessary energyservices demanded” by Californians. He was backed by Jack McNally,Business Manager of IBEW Local 1245, who observed “not only wouldthis be devastating for these loyal employees, it would mean moreoutages and longer outages after storms and earthquakes.” Smithsaid that because of the state’s electric industry restructuringlaw, the outcome of the case would have no effect customers.”Electric rates will remain frozen at their current levels until nolater than March 2002, and then will come down after that. Thereare no scenarios under which electric rates will do anything but godown, even if the Commission grants every dollar we requested tomaintain safe, reliable utility service.” PG&E, in its 1999General Rate Case, requested an $822 million revenue increase. ACPUC staff administrative law judge recommended last month anincrease of only $20 million.

The Washington Redskins football team has signed a multi-yearenergy management agreement with Dominion Resources. Through itsVirginia Power subsidiary, Dominion will provide comprehensiveenergy management solutions to Redskins Stadium. Virginia Power’sEvantage business unit will perform the work. Dominion also will beable to make special energy offers to Redskins fans whencompetition opens up the regulated natural gas and electricityindustries. “While our overall energy expenditures areconfidential, we anticipate the total dollar savings throughDominion’s energy solutions will be well into six figures eachyear,” said Michael Dillow, Redskins senior vice president.

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