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Deepwater Gulf of Mexico - America's Expanding Frontier
SOURCE: U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region
COMPANIES AND PRODUCTION
Deepwater oil and gas production was confined almost entirely to major oil and gas companies
through 1996 (figures 64a-b). (Production volumes in figures 64a-b, 65a-b, and 66a-b are attributed
to companies on the basis of their percentage of lease ownership. For example, if Shell owned
75 percent of a particular lease in July 1997, then 75 percent of that lease’s production was attributed
to Shell that month.)
However, since 2000, nonmajor oil production has leveled off while
major oil companies continued their steep increases in oil production.
companies currently own about 25 percent of deepwater GOM oil production and 30 percent of gas
In addition, nonmajor gas production represents an increasingly greater share of the total shallow-water gas production (figure 65b).
This confirms the speculation that majors have been concentrating more
in deepwater for their production needs.
Shell and BP were the driving forces behind increasing deepwater production, with Shell as the clear
leader in both oil and gas production.
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LEASING DRILLING AND DEVELOPMENT RESERVES AND PRODUCTION SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS Feedback