Skip to comments.Sarah Palin, Governor. Why has she been so successful in Alaska
Posted on 10/14/2008 8:34:20 PM PDT by T.L.Sink
Watching press coverage of the Republican candidate for vice president, it's sometimes hard to decide whether Sarah Palin is incompetent, stupid, unqualified, corrupt, backward or - well, all of the above. In fact, Palin may even have it worse than Quayle, since she's taking flak not only from Democrats and the press but from some conservative opinion leaders as well. Reporters raced to Alaska to look into her family life, including her teenage daughter's pregnancy; into her per diem expense requests; into her controversial firing of the state's public safety commissioner; into her husband's role as informal adviser; into the gifts she received; and into much more. Those investigations have yielded hundreds of stories. But Palin's time in the governor's office hasn't been all, or even mostly, family drama and minor controversy. She was also, lest we forget, the state's chief executive. So what did she do every day? How deeply involved was she in the workings of government? What were her priorities?
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She’s been allowed to live a real life and Washington can’t handle it. My Family relates to her life somewhat and welcomes what she brings to American politics. God Bless Her.
This is the thread I should have posted my earlier reply - Ari Fleischer on Jon Stewart tonight - great and gratifying, especially regarding all the ludicrous media attacks on Palin. He actually rendered JS speechless more than once - you’d love it - if you get a chance, it’ll rerun at 12 AM cst and tomorrow 9 AM and 7 PM (cst) on Comedy Central. A REALLY great interview - Ari ruled.
Because Alaska has yet to become a cesspool of liberal Democrats.
I will only point to one accomplishment which I think speaks volumes about her. The Oil Co’s have owned Alaska since the first barrel of oil bubbled up from the ground in the 70’s. Alaska has been a windfall for Conoco, Exxon and BP. Since that first barrel there has been talk of a TransAlaskan Natural Gas Pipeline. Here’s the Wikipedia entry about it. The fact is there have been five presidents and not one of them was able to do the deal. Palin comes into office and gets the job done. The only final approval needed is from the US government. I would wager this will be one of Bush’s last acts as president.
See also: Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry
 Initial evaluations
Large natural gas reserves were discovered in Prudhoe Bay in 1967. Talk of a pipeline peaked during the 1973 OPEC oil embargo and several companies came out in favor of large pipeline projects. Canadian Arctic Gas Pipeline, Ltd.a consortium of large oil companies including Shell, Exxon, and TransCanadaproposed a route from Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay across northern Yukon to the Mackenzie Delta, and then south through the Mackenzie Valley to Alberta. In addition, the Foothills Pipeline consortium pursued a competing Mackenzie Valley Pipeline, starting at the Mackenzie Delta and also running along the river valley to Alberta. Either proposal required the approval of the Canadian government, which named Thomas Berger to lead an inquiry into the proposals. Berger’s inquiry resulted in a recommendation for a ten year moratorium on development of the pipeline to deal with issues such as Aboriginal land claims and setting aside of conservation areas.
In the United States, three competing applications were filed with the Federal Power Commission to construct a natural gas pipeline from Prudhoe Bay. A proposal sponsored by El Paso Corporation routed the pipeline to Valdez along the oil pipeline route with LNG tankers then transporting the gas to terminals on the west coast. The other two proposals would cross Canada on a route parallel to the Alaska Highway. The Federal Power Commission conducted lengthy hearings on the relative merits of the three plans, and under the Natural Gas Act the Commission had the legal right to select the final route. Following the 1976 elections where John McMillian, CEO of Northwest Pipeline was a major supporter of Jimmy Carter, President Carter proposed special legislation to transfer the task of selecting a project from the Federal Power Commission to the President. Congress adopted the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Act of 1977, and Carter selected the project sponsored by Northwest to the exclusion of the other two projects. The Commission then proceeded to conduct further proceedings to issue certificates of public convenience and necessity to authorize construction of pipelines from Prudhoe Bay and extending to San Francisco and Chicago, and the United States and Canada entered into an agreement regarding having the gas pipeline follow the Alaskan Highway route.
Ultimately, Northwest’s consortium could not finance the project, and instead decided to “prebuild” the segments from Alberta to San Francisco and Chicago. Northwest justified the prebuild on the theory that using Canadian gas to depreciate the pipeline for a period of years would make the transportation of Alaskan gas more economic at a later date. The prebuild system went into service under the names Pacific Gas Transmission and Northern Border Pipeline. Subsequently, an affiliate of TransCanada Pipeline acquired Pacific Gas Transmission and 50% of Northern Border. Northwest was acquired by the Williams Companies . As a result, Northwest was no longer willing to pursue the full project to Prudhoe Bay.
 All-Alaskan Pipeline
Former Secretary of Interior Wally Hickel headed a consortium which sought to revive the El Paso proposal to construct an 800-mile gas pipeline along the oil pipeline route from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez (with a branch to Anchorage), because such a route would also serve Anchorage and Fairbanks and would have a much lower construction cost than the overland pipeline routes. The remaining gas would be exported as LNG. Competitors argued that this proposal was barred by the 1977 statute and President Carter’s decision. The consortium argued that because the pipeline would be used for intrastate commerce and foreign commerce, but not for interstate commerce, the project would not require Federal approvals under the Natural Gas Act. Three Alaskan boroughs voted to form the Alaskan Gasline Port Authority (AGPA) to promote this project under Alaska Code § 29.35.600.
Following Alaska’s decision to contribute $500 million to fund startup costs of an overland route, the AGPA is now advocating a “Y” route which would first go to Valdez and later build a second fork toward Canada.
 Alaska Gasline Inducement Act
On 3 July 2007, the Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin announced that the State of Alaska was ready to receive applications to build a pipeline within the framework of the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act (AGIA). On 4 January 2008, a proposal by TransCanada was selected. Four other proposals were submitted: By Sinopec, AEnergia, the AGPA, which proposed a liquefied natural gas project, and the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority.
On January 5, 2008, Palin announced that the Canadian company TransCanada Corp., was the sole AGIA-compliant applicant. On August 27, 2008, Palin signed a bill into law giving the state of Alaska authority to award TransCanada Corp. $500 million dollars in seed money and a license to build and operate the $26-billion pipeline to transport natural gas from the North Slope to the Lower 48, through Canada.
The license is not a construction contract, and federal energy regulators must approve the project before it can go forward.
 ConocoPhillips proposal
Outside of the AGIA process, authorities were evaluating a separate proposal issued by ConocoPhillips. On 9 April 2008, BP and ConocoPhillips announced that they would develop a joint pipeline project.
Possible routes include the Alaska route, or southern route, a pipeline along the Alaska Highway. A shorter alternative route, which was considered in 1970s, links Prudhoe Bay natural gas through Mackenzie River Valley. The pipeline will be built only if Canadian authorities can strike a deal with First Nations whose lands are in the pipeline route, who are accusing Palin and other pipeline proponents of treating them with disrespect by not consulting with them.
 Competing projects
The pipeline proposed by TransCanada would run 1,715 miles (2,760 km) from the North Slope to Calgary in Alberta. It is expected to cost US$26 billion and to be operational by 2018.
The project developed by Denali The Alaska Gas Pipeline LLC, a joint venture of BP and ConocoPhillips, foresees a pipeline with a capacity of 41 billion cubic meter (bcm) of natural gas per annum down the Alaska Highway across Alaska, through the Yukon and British Columbia into Alberta. It also consists of a gas treatment plant on North Slope. The project is estimated to cost US$32 billion and to be ready by 2018. It is possible that in the second stage an additional 1,500 miles (2,400 km) pipeline from Alberta to Chicago in the United States would be built as an alternative to the existing Northern Border Pipeline. ExxonMobil is invited to participate in the pipeline project. Also Enbridge, Royal Dutch Shell and Gazprom have shown an interest to join this project.
Opposition to the Alaska natural gas pipeline route mandate and price supports are coming from both the Bush administration and the Canadian government. In a letter to the Sen. Domenici, Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham wrote, “[The administration] believes market forces should select the route of the pipeline. He continued, The administration strongly opposes the price-floor tax credit provision in the Senate energy bill and any similar provisions.” However strong the administrations objections, Secretary Abraham suggested several non-price support tax provisions that could subsidize the construction of the pipeline. Former Canadian Ambassador to the United States Michael Kergin wrote, “Canada is of the opinion that the Alaskan pipeline should be built without subsidies and without the route being determined by legislation.”
Former Governor Wally Hickel has advocated an “All-Alaskan” route which would go from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez and would bring gas to Fairbanks and Anchorage. He opposes the award of the route to TransCanada which would not result in gas service for Alaska’s population centers.
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Thanks for the information - I’ll be watching.
I’m not sure this addresses your concern but NRO/Digital is only available to subscribers of NR magazine. The Palin article that was posted is exactly as it appears in the Oct. 20th issue of the magazine. NRO and the magazine are two different things. Is that what you’re referring to?