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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
For example, in 1992 there were 176 leases issued in water depths less than approximately 650 ft (200 m), compared with only 28 leases issued in water depths greater than that depth.
In 1995, the DWRRA established incentives for royalty relief based on water-depth intervals defined in meters.
The water-depth categories depicted in figure 24 reflect the divisions used in the DWRRA.
This figure shows the magnitude of the DWRRA impact, with tremendous deepwater leasing activity from 1996 through 1998 in water depths greater than 800 m (2,625 ft), where the greatest royalty relief was available.
In 1992, for example, leases in water depths greater than 800 m (2,625 ft) only accounted for 3 percent of leases issued. By the end of 1998, however, this had grown to almost 70 percent.
While interest in deepwater blocks increased during the mid-1990�s, interest in shallow-water blocks faded during that period. For example, shelf leases accounted for 86 percent of all leases issued in 1992, but this dropped to 23 percent by the end of 1998.
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LEASING DRILLING AND DEVELOPMENT RESERVES AND PRODUCTION SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS Feedback