In Alberta, the Crown owns 81% of the province's mineral rights (approximately 53.7 million hectares of land). The remaining 19% are 'freehold' mineral rights owned by the federal government on behalf of First Nations or in National Parks, and by individuals and companies.
The tenure system facilitates the leasing of rights that enable companies to explore for and develop petroleum and natural gas from Alberta's resources, for the benefit of Albertans.
Petroleum and natural gas (PNG) rights owned by the Province of Alberta can be acquired through a
competitive bid auction held about every two weeks. PNG Leases and Licences are issued to the successful bidders. Yearly, the province holds an average of 24 land auctions (Sales) and issues an average of 2,160 PNG Agreements as per the last three calendar years (2015 to 2017). As of February 2018, Alberta Energy administers about 77,000 PNG Agreements.