IDT Corporation has closed on the previously announced deal under which Total, the fifth largest international integrated oil and gas company, acquired a fifty percent interest in IDT's American Shale Oil, LLC (AMSO) subsidiary. The prospective deal was initially announced by both companies on January 14, 2009.
"Total's considerable expertise in unconventional fuels and large scale oil and gas development will be an important asset going forward," said Claude Pupkin, President of AMSO. "Together, we will vigorously pursue environmentally responsible approaches to developing this vitally important national resource. Our efforts could allow oil shale to make an important contribution to satisfy the world's growing energy demand."
AMSO is one of three holders of 10-year leases granted by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to assess, test and demonstrate the potential for commercial shale oil production in western Colorado. Once AMSO has demonstrated that its technology is economically viable and environmentally acceptable, it will have the opportunity to expand its lease to 5,120 acres for commercial development. The rights covered by the commercial preference lease are estimated to contain multi billion barrels of recoverable shale oil.
Currently, AMSO is undertaking site characterization work on its leasehold in Western Colorado.
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