BP's Calgary-based Canadian subsidiary said Wednesday it is planning to sell off the plants and pipelines that process and transport its natural gas products.

Unidentified sources have told Bloomberg the Canadian assets could fetch more than $2 billion.


A boat skims oil from the surface of the Gulf of Mexico in June after a massive oil spill at a BP-owned well off the coast of Louisiana. ((Dave Martin/Associated Press))

Word of the sale came the same day that the U.S. Justice Department filed a lawsuit against BP and eight other companies involved in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in April. The government will try to recover some of the billions of dollars it spent trying to contain and clean up the largest offshore spill in U.S. history.

The Canadian sale is part of BP's move to raise up to $30 billion US to cover compensation and cleanup costs.

The Bloomberg report cited Calgary-based Provident Energy Trust as a possible buyer. Provident said it has a policy of not commenting on negotiations for acquisitions.

Over the summer, BP sold its Canadian natural gas assets to Apache Corp. for $3.25 billion US. The sale was part of a $7-billion package that also included assets in the United States and Egypt.

Shortly after, Talisman Energy and its Colombian partner, Ecopetrol, said they would buy BP's Colombian oil and gas exploration assets for $1.9 billion US.

The Deepwater Horizon rig drilling an exploratory oil well for BP off the coast of Louisiana exploded on April 20, setting off a massive oil spill that went on for three months and dumped roughly five million barrels of oil into the Gulf.

With files from The Canadian Press