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Mar 29, 2023
Biden Begins Oil Drilling-Rights Sale in Fresh Blow to Activists
(Bloomberg) -- Chevron Corp., BP Plc. and other oil giants bid a combined $264 million in a Biden administration oil-drilling auction, a fresh affront to climate activists smarting from the White House’s approval of an Arctic exploration project.
The offshore sale — one of the nation’s largest ever — held by the Interior Department on Wednesday was one of several required under the Democrats’ climate law as a concession to Senator Joe Manchin to secure the bill’s passage in the Senate.
Chevron was the high bidder, offering $108 million for the rights to drill 75 tracts, according to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. BP won 37 bids totaling $46.6 million, while Shell Plc had 21 successful bids amounting to $20.1 million.
Climate activists including Earthjustice said the 1.7 millon-acre sale, which offered up almost all of the unspoken-for tracts in the Western and Central Gulf, was larger than required. The group filed a lawsuit to block the auction earlier this month.
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