Texas Selling First Leases for Offshore Geothermal Sites

January 18, 2007

The Texas General Land Office (GLO) announced January 12 that, as of January 16, the state is making more than 11,000 submerged acres available for leasing to develop geothermal energy. The sale is a first for Texas.

In a press release the GLO said its annual winter oil and gas lease sale will include leases for the acreage with subsurface, hot geologic strata and which is located in state-owned coastal waters in the Gulf of Mexico.

"We're finally making the Texas heat pay off," GLO commissioner Jerry Patterson said in the release. "This geothermal energy lease, like our wind energy efforts, shows Texas is committed to renewable energy."

Minimum bids for geothermal leases have been set at $2.00 per acre, compared with up to $8,750 an acre that was paid last year for the right to explore for oil and gas. The tracts range from 1,174 to 2,480 acres, and are located in Jefferson, Galveston, Chambers, Calhoun, Jackson, Nueces and Kleberg counties. In the quarterly lease sales, oil and gas firms typically submit sealed bids for the right to drill for hydrocarbons.

For more information, read the January 12 press release (PDF 130 KB).

Source: January 17 article in Refocus Weekly