The Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board (CNSOPB) issued Call for Bids NS18-3, which includes two industry-nominated parcels, on December 10, 2018. The CNSOPB administers the Call for Bids process on behalf of the federal and provincial governments for the Canada-Nova Scotia offshore area. This includes identifying Call for Bids Forecast Areas, selecting yearly Call for Bids parcels, reviewing industry nominations, receiving and reviewing bids, and awarding Exploration Licences (ELs). The issuance of a Call for Bids and the award of ELs are both subject to a federal and provincial Ministerial review and approval process as set out in legislation.
The annual Call for Bids process gives oil and gas companies the opportunity to bid on parcels of Crown land, and, if successful, be awarded an EL. EL holders may apply to the CNSOPB to explore for oil and gas, but no activity can take place without authorization.
As the regulator of the Canada-Nova Scotia offshore, we recognize that in carrying out our regulatory processes, it is important to engage with Indigenous groups and the public. An opportunity to submit written comments specific to the areas included in Call for Bids NS18-3 was provided from December 10, 2018 to February 8, 2019. These comments have now been uploaded to the Call For Bids website, and can be found here.