The Canada--Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board’s (CNSOPB) Call for Bids NS11-1 has resulted in four bids on offshore Nova Scotia lands.

Shell Canada Ltd. was the successful bidder for four separate parcels resulting in C$970 million in work expenditure bids.  “The Board will proceed with issuing Exploration Licences effective March 1, 2012 to Shell Canada Ltd. for these parcels, pending final Ministerial approval by both the Federal and Provincial governments,” says Stuart Pinks, CNSOPB CEO. 

The Work Expenditure Bid represents the amount of money the bidder intends to spend exploring the land parcels during the initial six-year period of a nine-year Exploration Licence. Successful bidders are required to post a deposit of 25% of the amount of the bid to demonstrate their commitment to conduct the intended work.  The following outlines the Work Expenditure Bid for each parcel:
Call for Bids NS11-1Work Expenditure Bid
Parcel 1

$ 1,756,450

Parcel 2

$ 303,078,225

Parcel 3

$ 235,025,888

Parcel 4

$ 430,139,437


$ 970,000,000

The Terms of the Call for Bids required bidders to have experience in the drilling of exploration wells in water depths greater than 800 metres in the past ten years.  Shell demonstrated that it has extensive worldwide experience in deepwater drilling including involvement in three previous deepwater exploratory wells drilled offshore Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.

“These Work Expenditure Bids are the highest received to date for parcels offshore of Canada’s east coast,” says Mr. Pinks.  “These lands are located offshore Southwest Nova Scotia where recent studies have identified oil potential.  It is also important for our community to know that we have a regulatory regime in place which serves to ensure that petroleum activities are only conducted by competent parties in a manner which holds the health and safety of offshore workers and the protection of the offshore environment paramount.”

No bids were received on the other four parcels included in Call for Bids NS11-1.