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Release Date: 07/31/14
Contacts: Paul McGuire , 405-790-1009  

First Federal Helium Auction Generates Over $14 Million for US Treasury

Amarillo, Texas--The Bureau of Land Management conducted the first auction of federal helium here today under the terms of the recently enacted Helium Stewardship Act. A total of 92 Mmcf from the Federal Helium Reserve near Amarillo was sold, representing 10 percent of the total volume BLM will make available from the Reserve in Fiscal Year 2015.

The helium was sold in 12 lots ranging from five to 10 MMcf, with bids ranging from $130 to $180 per Mcf, generating a total of $14,972,568 in revenue. This revenue is part of the nearly $185 million the Helium Program will contribute to the U.S. Treasury this year.

"Today's auction was successful in achieving a key objective of the HSA," said BLM Amarillo Field Office Manager Robert Jolley, "which is to maximize the value of federal helium through a market-driven process. This, in turn, is expected to incentivize private producers to develop other sources of helium - domestically and internationally - to supply the market when the Federal Helium Reserve is fully drawn down."

Passed by Congress in October 2013, the HSA established an auction system for the sale of the federal helium and mandated that all property, equipment and interest held by the United States in the Federal Helium Reserve be disposed of by September 30, 2021.  In response, the BLM’s FY2014 implementation plan provides for an orderly transition to a privatized system through a series of auctions and sales to ensure minimal market disruption.  The plan also includes measures to ensure that Federal users of helium can continue to have a supply of the gas; and the disposal of government assets in the system no later than September 30, 2021.


The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Last updated: 02-09-2015