Crown Sales of Oil and Gas Dispositions
Crown Land Sales
The parcels posted in a sale are those requested by the oil companies. To facilitate this process a closing date for receiving postings is set just over two months prior to the sale date. However, requests for Special Exploratory Permits must be submitted at least one month prior to the published close date to allow sufficient time for processing.
The posting requests are reviewed internally to determine whether or not they are already under lease, freehold, or if they are encumbered by caveats or other restrictions. If the lands are Crown lands undisposed, a further review determines whether or not they are selected for Treaty Land Entitlement purposes or overlapping mineral permits/leases (eg. coal, potash, diamonds, etc), and then reviewed for environmental or heritage concerns.
If ER chooses not to post the lands because of any of the concerns listed above, ER will advise the company of this fact. Otherwise, ER will post them with appropriate conditions noted.
If your company is conducting seismic in advance of submitting posting requests, it is a good idea to review the land for these same concerns prior to gathering the seismic since ER may not be able to post the lands and ER cannot guarantee surface access.
Submitting Posting Requests
Requests for postings will be accepted up to 4:00 p.m. CST on the closing date for the sale.
Posting requests are to be mailed or preferably faxed to:
Petroleum Tenure Branch - Crown Sales
For inquiries regarding postings, please contact the Manager of Crown Sales at (306) 787-2610.
Saskatchewan does not have a prescribed posting form. Posting request letters should include the following:
Requests can be submitted at any time prior to the closing date, however they will not be processed until approximately one month before the closing date. Requests for Special Exploratory Permits must be submitted at least one month prior to the closing date.
Receipt of fax confirmation can be obtained by phoning (306) 787-1155 the day following transmission. Confirmation of posting status will be faxed or mailed as soon as possible after processing is complete.
In the case of overlapping requests, priority will be given to:
The final configuration of a parcel is solely at the discretion of the Ministry.
Inquiries regarding the availability of acreage for posting should be directed to the Lands and Development Services Branch at (306) 787-2588.
Requests for Leases
A request for a single lease parcel cannot be larger than 4 sections. The lands requested for a single lease must be contiguous. Parcels less than 16 hectares, which are required to complete a drainage unit, will generally be negotiated with the holder of the freehold lease for the remainder of the drainage unit.
Requests for Exploration Licences
The size of an Exploration Licence shall be a minimum of 1 section to a maximum of 36 sections. Requests for an Exploration Licence of 3 sections or less must be accompanied by details justifying the small size.
Requests for Special Exploratory Permits
Special Exploratory Permits are for very large tracts of land in a designated area of central Saskatchewan. The size of a Special Exploratory Permit shall be a minimum of 10,000 hectares to a maximum of 200,000 hectares for PNG rights and 100,000 hectares for Oil Sands and Oil Shale rights. Special Exploratory Permits cannot be posted within 40 kilometres of any well which is cased for petroleum or natural gas production or within 10 kilometres of any active Oil Shale or Oil Sands Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) project.
Posting requests for a Special Exploratory Permit must be submitted at least one month prior to the closing date for the sale for which it is requested.
Updates and Other Information
Inquiries regarding the availability of acreage for posting should be directed to the Lands and Development Services Branch at (306) 787-2588
Bidding on Special Exploratory Permits
When bidding on Special Exploratory Permits a bidder must submit the following:
Bidding on Exploration Licences
When bidding on an Exploration Licence a bidder must submit:
Bidding on Leases
When bidding on a Lease at a land sale a bidder must submit:
Once the list of Special Exploratory Permits, Exploration Licences and Lease parcels has been finalized, the Sale Notice is prepared. This is issued about one month after the closing date and made available to the public. The Notice can be accessed at ER's website www.er.gov.sk.ca/publicofferings or you can subscribe to ER's FREE e-mail service at http://www.er.gov.sk.ca/Default.aspx?DN=3840,3402,3384,2936,Documents .
The Sale Notice outlines the procedure for bidding on the various dispositions and may include special notices to interested parties. Information on individual wells near sale parcels is made available at a cost of $1.00 per well and can be obtained by contacting our Geodata Unit at (306)787-2562. Geophysical information can also be acquired from Geodata at a cost of $11.00 per map. Next, restriction codes for parcels are listed and if partial rights are being offered, those parcels are listed with the rights noted.
In the case of Special Exploratory Permits, a map, terms and conditions for bidding and the calculation of work commitment bids are all included to ensure there is no confusion on what is being bid upon.
Bidding at Sales
The closing time for receiving bids for a sale is 4:00 p.m. CST on the sale date. The procedure for submitting bids is outlined on page one of the Sale Notice. With the exception of P&NG and Oil Shale exploratory permits, sufficient funds must be in place to cover the bonus, rental and the application fee for any parcel desired and the electronic debit code must be indicated in the bid letter. Each offer made for a parcel must be placed in a separate envelope with the parcel number clearly marked on the outside. The electronic debit system for payment of successful bids is the only acceptable form of payment. Note that first-time bidders must contact ER's Revenue Operations and Audit Services Branch at (306)787-6508 sufficiently ahead of a sale, as some time is required to implement the process.
Type of Bid that may be submitted
Only two types of bids will be accepted, with the accepted type of bid dependent on the disposition-type.
Acceptance or Rejection of Bids
Once the bids have been received, processed and the highest bidder on each parcel has been determined, the Ministry then reviews each bid to see whether or not it will be accepted. Each parcel has an evaluation done prior to the sale and this evaluation is updated as last minute information is obtained from confidential (DATH) holes and from ER's field staff. Evaluations are based on a number of technical criteria including current land values in the vicinity of the parcel being offered, geology/reservoir engineering and economic indicators.
Results of Sale
The results of the sale are normally available between 8:00 a.m. and noon on the Thursday following the sale, after the News Release from the Minister's Office is made available to the public. The results are immediately loaded onto the website and sent to email subscribers (free email subscription at www.er.gov.sk.ca/subscribeonline). Hard copies are mailed out the next day.
Landsale statistics and graphs are available on the website at http://www.economy.gov.sk.ca/LandSaleStatistics
Relevant Legislation and Regulation
Crown oil and gas dispositions are regulated under The Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulations, 1969 and The Oil Shale Regulations, 1964, which are created pursuant to The Crown Minerals Act. The regulations and legislation can be downloaded in PDF format for free at the Queen's Printer Freelaw website http://www.qp.gov.sk.ca/ Links to these documents and others (including, The Oil and Gas Conservation Act, The Oil and Gas Conservation Regulations, 1985 and The Crown Oil and Gas Royalty Regulations) are available at ER's website at http://www.er.gov.sk.ca/Default.aspx?DN=4032,3692,3384,2936,Documents