press release

Spirit Energy 76 is high bidder for interests in 28 Gulf of Mexico blocks

Sugar Land, Texas, March 18, 1998 -- Spirit Energy 76, Unocal Corporation's U.S. exploration and production business unit, announced today that it is the apparent high bidder for interests in 19 continental shelf and 10 deepwater blocks. The blocks were offered at the OCS Central Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale No. 169, conducted on March 18th by the U.S. Minerals Management Service.

Spirit Energy 76 was the apparent high bidder on 19 out of 23 continental shelf blocks. The company exposed $7.2 million on the shelf and had apparent high bids totaling $6.5 million.

"We're very pleased to build on our significant shelf position and have added several properties we'll be able to drill this year," said Dave Johnson, vice president of exploration. "We were particularly successful in the prolific Norphlet play in the Mobile Bay area, where we acquired 8 out of 9 tracts."

Spirit Energy 76 was also the apparent high bidder for 10 deepwater blocks.

"In the past year, Spirit has more than quadrupled its deepwater tracts to 129 and more than doubled its continental shelf blocks to 74," said Dave Johnson. "Our success in this sale fits well with our plan to boost near-term reserves and production rates."

Forward-looking statements and estimates of future financial and operating results in this News Release are based on assumptions concerning market, competitive, regulatory, environmental, operational and other considerations. Actual results could differ materially.

Updated: March 1998