Keyword: northslope

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  • Whither BP’s behemoth? {AK North Slope, Liberty, monster rig}

    08/15/2014 2:06:33 PM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Petroleum News | Week of August 17, 2014 | Wesley Loy
    As company works up new Liberty development plan, big rig remains sidelined - - - - It’s been five years since BP shipped a gigantic, specially designed drilling rig to Alaska’s North Slope to develop the offshore Liberty oil field. But the rig has yet to drill a well. It’s just sitting there. Exactly what BP plans to do with the behemoth, constructed by Parker Drilling Co., remains to be seen. But one thing seems apparent - it won’t be used for the Liberty project. BP has indicated as much in correspondence this year with the federal Bureau of Ocean...
  • Big Oil on a spending spree in Alaska – for now

    06/02/2014 5:00:42 AM PDT · by thackney · 3 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | June 1, 2014 | FuelFix.com
    Energy company investments in Alaska could reverse declining oil production in the state. Firms are planning the largest energy project in the state’s history along with a series of moves to rejuvenate Alaska’s biggest oil fields. That is unless, the companies are saying, voters in the state in August dismantle a new oil tax regime that Houston-based ConocoPhillips and others say makes Alaska far more attractive than it was under higher levies imposed in 2007. In a story at HoustonChronicle.com, FuelFix reporter Collin Eaton takes a look at the energy projects that area planned and issues surrounding the tax vote.
  • Alaska Voters Hold the Key to the North Slope

    05/16/2014 10:07:09 AM PDT · by thackney · 9 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | May 16, 2014 | Brigham McCown
    As political shenanigans continue to delay approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, Alaskan voters hold the key to avoiding a similar fate for what could be North America’s largest pipeline project. At an estimated cost of at least $45 billion, the Alaskan LNG natural gas pipeline project will deliver jobs and provide a boost to the economy in towns and villages all along the 800-mile route stretching from the North Slope to the Kenai Peninsula. After decades of talking about how to tap into the vast gas resources on Alaska’s North Slope, this project is poised to make that reality....
  • Prudhoe Bay Winds Spread Leaking Gas, Oil and Water Across 27 Acres of Tundra

    04/30/2014 6:04:37 AM PDT · by thackney · 28 replies
    KUAC ^ | APRIL 29, 2014 | EMILY SCHWING
    A flowline to a well operated by BP Exploration, Incorporated Prudhoe Bay leaked on Monday. High winds at Prudhoe Bay have resulted in a spray of natural gas, crude oil and water that covers an area larger than 20 football fields. According to the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, operators with BP were working at a well, when a flowline leaking. Ashley Adamczak is an Environmental Program Specialist with DEC. She says 30-mile-an-hour winds on the North Slope sprayed leaking natural gas, water and crude oil across an estimated 27 acres of snow-covered tundra. “What has not been delineated at...
  • BP selling stakes in Alaska’s North Slope to Houston company

    04/23/2014 5:07:38 AM PDT · by thackney · 4 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | April 22, 2014 | Collin Eaton
    BP is selling off stakes in four Alaskan oil fields near the gigantic Prudhoe Bay, a move that would cut about 15 percent of its crude production in the state, the company said late Tuesday. The British oil company did not disclose the price it would get from Hilcorp, a private Houston-based oil producer that has been jockeying for Alaska’s natural gas basins. In the deal, which is expected to close by the end of the year, Hilcorp would receive all of BP’s interest in the offshore Endicott and Northstar fields and half of its stakes in the Milne Point...
  • SADAR: Wasting Alaska’s energy bounty

    02/06/2014 10:15:38 AM PST · by thackney · 6 replies
    Washington Times ^ | February 5, 2014 | Anthony Sadar
    ...began my professional career in atmospheric science on the icy shores of the Chukchi Sea — 160 miles above the Arctic Circle. I was hired by the RCA Service Co. to be a civilian weather observer at a lonely Air Force base in Cape Lisburne, Alaska. ...I long to see this truly wild and wonderful state continue to prosper as not just a terrific employment or tourist destination, but as an even bigger energy lifeline to the lower 48, as well. Alaska’s frozen frontier of spectacular natural beauty is also home to copious energy reserves. Americans should enjoy the grand...
  • Huge Natural Gas From Methane Hydrates Process Developed

    05/03/2012 12:51:07 PM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 57 replies
    New Energy and Fuel ^ | May 3, 2012
    U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Steven Chu contributed a statement to an announced breakthrough in research into tapping the vast fuel resource of methane hydrates that could eventually bolster already massive U.S. natural gas reserves.As Al Fin pointed out yesterday natural gas is priced to a barrel of oil equivalent at about $10-$11 per the estimable Geoffrey Styles view, something less than 10% of the cost of oil. For North Americans adding a viable and hopefully low cost means to make use of gas hydrates could be giant boost to low cost fuel sources and a massive kick to...
  • BP’s Liberty island, Regulators reveal company’s thinking on how to proceed with stalled Alaska

    10/08/2013 5:30:31 AM PDT · by thackney · 5 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of October 06, 2013 | Wesley Loy
    In June 2012, BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. made the startling announcement that it was dropping its ambitious plan to develop the offshore Liberty field using ultra extended-reach drilling from shore. In the 15 months since, it has been less than clear what alternate approach, if any, BP might take on Liberty. But now, the company’s direction is becoming evident. On the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management website devoted to Liberty, this statement has appeared: “BP Exploration (Alaska) is now proposing a stand-alone drilling and production processing island as the safest and most environmentally responsible course of development for the...
  • Another ANWR denial, Federal officials reject Alaska governor’s latest plan to explore coastal plain

    08/04/2013 5:30:19 AM PDT · by thackney · 11 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | August 04, 2013 | Wesley Loy
    Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell’s open-ANWR strategy isn’t working, at least not so far. The Obama administration has again turned back a Parnell proposal to conduct exploratory activity on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The Republican governor had submitted, on July 9, an application to the Interior Department for a “special use permit” allowing the state to conduct 3-D seismic surveys across the coastal plain from 2014 to 2017. On July 26, the governor’s office released a July 23 rejection letter from Geoffrey Haskett, Alaska regional director for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which manages ANWR....
  • An eight-fold challenge, ConocoPhillips octolateral well accesses oil pockets in maturing Kuparuk

    07/02/2013 4:15:43 AM PDT · by thackney · 9 replies
    Alan Bailey ^ | Week of June 30, 2013 | Alan Bailey
    ConocoPhillips octolateral well accesses oil pockets in maturing Kuparuk field In the early days of developing the huge Kuparuk River field on Alaska’s North Slope, producing oil involved drilling steeply inclined oil wells through a series of prolific reservoir sands. Now, with the easy oil gone but much oil still remaining underground, field operator ConocoPhillips is using ever more challenging techniques to access remaining pockets of oil in the field’s complex and fragmented system of reservoir sands. The company recently drilled an octolateral well — a well with eight horizontal wells originating from a single near-vertical well bore — as...
  • BP to spend $1 billion in Alaska’s North Slope

    06/03/2013 5:07:55 AM PDT · by thackney · 10 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | June 2, 2013 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    BP is set to announce Monday that it will sink $1 billion into revving up crude production from Alaska’s declining North Slope, weeks after the state decided to give the oil industry a $750 million annual tax cut. The British oil giant plans to add two drilling rigs to its Prudhoe Bay field, bringing the count up to nine, the highest in about six years. New well work and drilling, along with upgrades of existing facilities, could support 200 new jobs, the company said. Separately, with the agreement of its working interest partners at Prudhoe Bay, including ConocoPhillips and Exxon...
  • Republicans aim to overturn Obama’s plan for Alaskan oil

    05/22/2013 11:45:15 AM PDT · by thackney · 4 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | May 22, 2013 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    House Republicans on Wednesday took one of the first steps toward overturning a new Obama administration plan for managing wildlife and oil development in the 23-million-acre National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. During a House subcommittee hearing on a bill to repeal the reserve management plan, Republicans insisted the administration’s blueprint tilts too heavily toward conservation by walling off energy development in roughly half of the reserve. “The Obama administration appears determined, against the wishes of most Alaskans, to keep their energy resources off limits,” said Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash. who sponsored the repeal bill along with Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska. Finalized by...
  • Fight for the frontier {drilling in National Petroleum Reserve - Alaska}

    05/13/2013 8:43:38 AM PDT · by thackney
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of May 12, 2013 | Wesley Loy
    State, ConocoPhillips, ASRC join defense of permit for first NPR-A development - - - - Quite a legal battle is shaping up over the expansion of oil and gas development into Alaska’s western North Slope frontier. The conflict centers on a planned project known as Colville Delta 5. ConocoPhillips Alaska Inc. has a federal permit to build and operate the CD-5 drill site inside the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. Seven residents of Nuiqsut, a predominantly Inupiat Eskimo village a few miles southeast of CD-5, are suing in Anchorage federal court to invalidate the permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of...
  • Legislature agrees to cut Alaska oil-production taxes

    04/15/2013 6:59:09 AM PDT · by thackney
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | April 14, 2013 | RICHARD MAUER
    The Alaska Senate on Sunday afternoon approved the oil-tax bill that passed the House 13 hours before, sending to Gov. Sean Parnell the measure he had sought to save billions of dollars for Alaska's leading industry. The Senate vote was 12-8 to concur with the revised bill that the House approved 24-15 just before 2 a.m. Sunday morning (on reconsideration, three Republicans switched to support the bill). The Senate vote came past the midway point of the 90th day of the 90-day session. Parnell said that Alaska's current tax regime, which he backed as lieutenant governor in 2007 when it...
  • Alyeska: Less water could extend the life of pipeline

    04/01/2013 5:21:00 AM PDT · by thackney · 8 replies
    Fairbanks Daily News Miner ^ | March 31, 2013 | Jeff Richardson
    After focusing for years on adding heat to the chilly contents of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline, officials are planning to study a new approach to boosting line performance — decreasing the amount of water inside. With North Slope oil production in a 25-year-long decline, the pipeline is becoming more vulnerable to problems as the flow of crude decreases. A barrel of oil took just four days to travel the length of the 800-mile line in 1988, but now takes 18 days. Because of the slower flow rate, the temperature of oil can sometimes dip down to 32 degrees during its...
  • Alaska Senate stands by vote to cut taxes on oil industry

    03/22/2013 8:15:02 AM PDT · by thackney · 19 replies
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | March 21, 2013 | RICHARD MAUER
    The Senate completed passage of the governor's oil-tax revamp Thursday, confirming its original 11-9 vote on reconsideration. After all the drama Wednesday -- a session that spanned nine hours and featured long debates on amendments and then on Senate Bill 21 itself -- only one senator asked for debate time Wednesday. "I read that I spoke for about 40 minutes last night," said Sen. Bill Wielechowski, D-Anchorage, an opponent of the bill. "I won't put you through that again today, but this bill pushes about $2,000 a minute across to the oil industry, every minute of the day for the...
  • Shell will repair rigs in Asia, possibly delaying Arctic work

    02/12/2013 8:45:00 AM PST · by thackney · 1 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | February 11, 2013 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    After dedicating nearly eight years and $5 billion to the quest, Shell’s plans to continue hunting for Arctic oil this summer are in jeopardy, as company officials on Monday confirmed they will tow two drilling units to Asian dry docks for repairs. Although Shell Oil said the firm has not ruled out drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas north of Alaska this summer, it appears unlikely the vessels will be able to make the two-to-four-week treks to those Asian ports, undergo repairs, clear U.S. inspections and return to those Arctic waters in time for the drilling season that begins...
  • BP lays out development plans in Alaska

    01/14/2013 8:13:55 AM PST · by thackney
    Fairbanks Daily News Miner ^ | Jan 11, 2013 | Associated Press
    An executive with BP Alaska says the company plans to add two new rigs on the North Slope this year. But Phil Cochrane says the company won't search for or produce new sources of oil. In prepared remarks to an Alaska Support Industry Alliance conference in Anchorage, Cochrane said the rigs will be used to accelerate production from existing reserves. He said it's a response to a state policy that discourages investment.
  • Amid pressure of ‘fiscal cliff,’ Senate moves Alaska gas line bill

    01/05/2013 5:35:54 AM PST · by thackney · 3 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of January 06, 2013 | WESLEY LOY
    In the wee hours of New Year’s Day, the U.S. Senate approved a hard-fought deal to stave off the dreaded “fiscal cliff.” But that wasn’t the only order of business for the bleary-eyed senators. They also passed, by unanimous consent, a bill that someday could prove an important piece of a plan to bring energy security to Southcentral Alaska. The bill (S. 302) would allow for construction of a natural gas pipeline through Denali National Park and Preserve. The planned pipeline would run 737 miles overall, from the rich gas fields of the North Slope to the area of Anchorage...
  • Rig grounding could put Shell’s Arctic drilling plans on ice

    01/05/2013 5:23:00 AM PST · by thackney · 3 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | January 5, 2013 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    Even if Shell is able to free its grounded Kulluk drilling rig from a rocky Alaskan island shore, it may be too damaged to resume hunting Arctic oil this summer. The 29-year-old conical drilling unit is uniquely designed to weather floating ice, and replacements aren’t readily available. Even if Shell Oil Co. could find an Arctic-ready rig, it almost certainly would not secure air pollution permits for a different vessel in time to resume drilling wells this July. “These are very specialized rigs,” noted Dave Pursell, managing director of the Houston-based energy investment bank Tudor Pickering Holt & Co. “If...
  • Kulluk drilling rig accident stokes fresh fears on Arctic drilling

    01/02/2013 5:08:12 AM PST · by thackney · 26 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | January 1, 2013 at 6:57 pm | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    The grounding of Shell’s Kulluk drilling rig amid a fierce storm in the Gulf of Alaska raised the specter of a fuel spill in the region and provided fresh fodder to drilling foes who insist Arctic oil exploration is too risky to allow. The episode also cast doubt on whether Shell Oil Co. will be able to resume its hunt for Arctic oil this year. The 29-year-old Kulluk conical drilling unit was unmanned when it plowed into rocks on the southeast side of Sitkalidak Island Monday night in Alaska, and there were no major injuries. But Coast Guard and Shell...
  • Frozen landslide threatens to devour Dalton Highway {Blob approaching Alaska Pipeline}

    12/03/2012 9:33:56 AM PST · by thackney · 40 replies
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | December 1, 2012 | KYLE HOPKINS
    A mysterious blob of frozen soil, rocks and trees is creeping toward the Dalton Highway, threatening to block the haul road that serves as a lifeline for Alaska's oil and gas industry. It could happen as soon as end of the decade. University of Alaska Fairbanks researchers who have been studying the slow-moving landslide just south of the Brooks Range since 2008 say it is crawling closer to the highway every day. The scientists suspect climate change may have caused the 300-foot-wide finger of debris -- once thought to be motionless -- to gain speed as it slides toward the...
  • Oil and tradition try life together in far north Alaska

    11/26/2012 6:28:28 AM PST · by thackney · 5 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | November 26, 2012 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    BARROW, Alaska – Minutes after the hunters’ harpoon pierced the flesh of a bowhead whale, the call went out. By cellphone and radio, native Alaskans were beckoned to the beach. Dozens worked furiously in the dark to carve the 40-ton beast and distribute the meat before it could spoil. The resulting harvest in early October was stashed in cellars tunneled into the tundra. It will supply the delicacy muktuk for holiday celebrations and put food on the table of native Alaskans in far-flung villages for months to come. The ritual has been going on for centuries in this small town...
  • Trans-Alaska oil pipeline marks 35 years of production

    06/21/2012 5:51:46 AM PDT · by thackney · 14 replies
    AP via Anchorage Daily News ^ | June 20th, 2012 | MARY PEMBERTON
    The engineering feat that is the trans-Alaska pipeline is celebrating a milestone. On Wednesday, the 800-mile pipeline marked 35 years of production with more than 16.5 billion barrels of oil loaded at the North Slope's Prudhoe Bay oil field for delivery to Valdez at the line's southern end. There, tankers leave Prince William Sound and head for West Coast refineries. It was June 20, 1977, when oil was loaded for the first time into the pipeline, also known as TAPS. It arrived in Valdez -- the country's northernmost ice-free port -- 38 days later. "The pipeline is an engineering marvel,...
  • Flint Hills refinery unit to shut down sooner than expected {North Pole, Alaska}

    06/19/2012 10:52:27 AM PDT · by thackney · 11 replies
    Alaska Journal of Commerce ^ | JUNE 14, 201 | TIM BRADNER
    Flint Hills Resources will have its North Pole refinery crude oil processing unit No. 1 shut down Aug. 1, about a month earlier than the company had said. The closure will leave the refinery’s crude processing unit No. 2 still operating. The refinery’s crude processing unit No. 3 was shut down in 2010. The plant at North Pole is near Fairbanks. Flint Hills takes crude oil from the nearby Trans-Alaska Pipeline System to manufacture fuel products. Flint Hills spokesman Jeff Cook would not provide estimate of the production capability of the remaining unit but said that it is capable of...
  • Alaska Senate passes revised oil tax bill {Alaska}

    04/16/2012 4:52:14 AM PDT · by thackney · 9 replies
    AP via Fiarbanks Daily News-Miner ^ | Apr 14, 2012 | Becky Bohrer
    The Alaska Senate on Saturday passed a bill intended to encourage new field oil production, just days after an overhaul of Alaska's oil tax structure stalled in the Senate's bipartisan majority caucus. A piece of that overhaul was a tax break for oil production in new fields. On Saturday morning the Senate Finance Committee grafted a version of that from the stalled SB192 onto a House bill intended to encourage more oil and gas drilling in select basins around the state. The bill, which passed 17-3, must go back to the House, which would have to agree to the changes...
  • On to the floor: Senate Finance moves production tax, SB 192 {Alaska}

    04/14/2012 4:17:05 AM PDT · by thackney · 17 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of April 15, 2012 | Kristen Nelson
    As the Alaska Legislature moves toward an April 15 adjournment, a bill basically two years in the making is finally moving to its first floor vote. Senate Bill 192 began life in the Senate Resources Committee earlier this session after the Senate refused to consider the governor’s tax change bill, House Bill 110, which the House passed last year. Senators said at the time that they needed more information before making any changes to the production tax system initially crafted as the Petroleum Profits Tax, or PPT, in 2006 under Gov. Frank Murkowski, and then rewritten in 2007 as ACES...
  • Shops empty as oil production declines {Alaska}

    03/26/2012 7:11:24 AM PDT · by thackney · 23 replies · 24+ views
    Alaska Journal of Commerce ^ | Mar 22, 2012 | TIM BRADNER
    When a film producer called up CH2M Hill’s area manager Tom Maloney a few weeks ago to ask if the company’s empty fabrication shop could be used as space for film production, it was the last straw. Maloney’s job includes keeping the shop full and its people working. “I was tempted – it was revenue – but I just couldn’t let it happen on the odd chance that we might get some work into the shop,” Maloney said. Alaska’s once-bustling oilfield fabrication shops are now empty, CH2M Hill’s among them. ASRC Energy, which also operates a fabrication shop in south...
  • Upping the ante, Armstrong puts plans with Repsol at $9 billion, if oil taxes change

    03/19/2012 5:11:57 AM PDT · by thackney · 1 replies · 1+ views
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of March 18, 2012 | Kristen Nelson
    The major producers on Alaska’s North Slope have said that with meaningful changes in the state’s oil and gas production tax there are some $5 billion in projects which could become economic. Projects discussed by BP Exploration (Alaska) and ConocoPhillips Alaska are in the major producing fields, Prudhoe Bay and Kuparuk. What about $9 billion in projects on currently undeveloped state land if the state makes meaningful changes in production tax on lands not currently producing? That was the carrot Bill Armstrong, president of Armstrong Oil & Gas and 70 & 148 LLC, held out to legislators in a March...
  • Senate rejects drilling for oil in Arctic refuge

    03/14/2012 5:47:10 AM PDT · by thackney · 18 replies
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | March 13th, 2012 | SEAN COCKERHAM
    <p>The U.S. Senate on Tuesday resoundingly rejected a sweeping measure to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other protected areas to drilling as well as approve construction of the Keystone pipeline project.</p> <p>The vote was the first time in four years the Senate has voted on a measure including ANWR drilling, and it failed miserably. The proposal needed 60 votes to pass and avoid a filibuster. It received only 41 votes in favor, with 57 senators against.</p>
  • Oil giants: Tax changes will lure investment

    03/12/2012 5:18:54 AM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Petroleum News via Anchorage Daily News ^ | March 11th, 2012 | KRISTEN NELSON
    BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. and Conoco Phillips Alaska told the Senate Resources Committee there are projects the companies could do on Alaska's North Slope to increase oil production, but those projects will have trouble attracting capital investment because of high state taxes. Damien Bilbao, head of finance, developments and resources for BP, discussed a proposed reduction in the "progressivity" of the state oil production tax from 0.35 from 0.40. He told the committee: "A change of five-hundredth of a percentage point will not sway our investment decisions in Alaska." (He was discussing an earlier version of Senate Bill 192 than...
  • House approves opening ANWR — again

    02/17/2012 9:11:04 AM PST · by thackney · 23 replies
    Alaska Journal of Commerce ^ | Feb 16, 2012 | AJC
    For the 12th time, U.S. Rep. Don Young has gotten legislation passed out of the House of Representatives to authorize opening of a portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to resource development. By a 237 to 187 vote, the House today sent H.R. 3408 to the Senate where it faces an uncertain future. Opening ANWR has only made it out of the Senate once, and was vetoed by President Bill Clinton in 1996. “This is a great piece of legislation for the American people,” said Young in a statement released by his office. “Tapping into ANWR’s enormous energy potential...
  • Analyst says trans-Alaska pipeline flow can grow

    02/14/2012 8:04:17 AM PST · by thackney · 15 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | February 14, 2012 | Associated Press
    Gov. Sean Parnell’s goal of nearly doubling the flow of oil through the trans-Alaska pipeline could be achieved over the next 10 to 15 years — but not without major fiscal and policy changes, a consultant said. Pedro van Meurs, an oil and gas consultant, told a joint hearing of the Senate Resources and Finance committees that Parnell’s tax-cut bill “does not even come close” to going far enough to hit the Republican governor’s goal of 1 million barrels a day. He said “more elaborate” legislation is needed if Alaska wants significant increases in production. Reaching Parnell’s goal includes new...
  • Shell hopes to drill this summer in the Arctic

    02/06/2012 5:23:49 AM PST · by thackney · 3 replies
    AP via Anchorage Daily News ^ | February 5th, 2012 | DAN JOLING
    It's the billion-dollar question in Alaska for 2012: Will this be the year Shell Oil begins large-scale offshore exploratory drilling in Arctic waters? Two months into 2012, the oil giant is beyond the lead time it said it needed to assemble the flotilla of support vessels that must accompany drill ships to leases in the remote Chukchi and Beaufort seas. But Shell Alaska Vice President Pete Slaiby remains hopeful drilling can begin when Arctic Ocean ice melts this summer, even as he awaits a green light from regulators. "There is clearly more certainty with the regulatory process than we've had...
  • Gas-hydrate tests to begin in Alaska

    01/17/2012 8:11:48 AM PST · by thackney · 4 replies
    Nature ^ | 13 January 2012 | Nicola Jones
    This month, scientists will test a new way to extract methane from beneath the frozen soil of Alaska: they will use waste carbon dioxide from conventional wells to force out the desired natural gas. The pilot experiment will explore the possibility of ‘mining’ from gas hydrates: cages of water ice that hold molecules of methane. Such hydrates exist under the sea floor and in sandstone deep beneath the Arctic tundra, holding potentially vast reserves of natural gas. But getting the gas out is tricky and expensive. The test is to be run by the US Department of Energy (DOE), in...
  • {Alaskan North} Slope producers lay out scenario with proposed oil changes

    01/12/2012 12:19:03 PM PST · by thackney · 16 replies
    ALASKA JOURNAL OF COMMERCE ^ | Jan 12, 2012 | TIM BRADNER
    North Slope oil producers have laid out their vision of what’s possible with new oil development if the state Legislature makes changes in the state’s oil production tax. They’ve also highlighted the problems they face under the status quo. BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. President John Minge said he believes there is about $5 billion in projects the producers could tackle if lawmakers pass Gov. Sean Parnell’s House Bill 110 or something like it this year. Many of the projects are within the existing producing fields. Minge also outlined one new project BP is testing this year, in a layer of...
  • The ugly reality {of Alaska's current oil and gas debate}

    01/12/2012 12:01:15 PM PST · by thackney · 3 replies
    AndrewHalcro.com ^ | Jan 10, 2012 | Andrew Halcro
    While pundits, lawmakers and anonymous blog opiners are building a cottage industry out of criticizing Alaska's oil and gas industry, they should take a glance at history and then take a long look in the mirror. As long as oil has been flowing through the trans-Alaska pipeline, there has been a growing list of perceived injustices against an industry that built this state. Before oil, our great state was flat broke, and Alaskans like my parents who owned small family businesses wondered if the state would survive after the 1964 earthquake. But then came oil which helped fulfill the promise...
  • Corps approves CD-5, ConocoPhillips gets Clean Water Act permit for road, bridge - Nigliq Channel

    12/26/2011 8:10:04 AM PST · by thackney · 4 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of December 25, 2011 | Kristen Nelson
    It’s across the Colville and into the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska for ConocoPhillips Alaska — at last. A bridge crossing of the Nigliq Channel of the Colville River was the preferred alternative in the 2004 final environmental impact statement for Alpine satellite development, but it took years for the company to get alignment from the North Slope Borough, the adjacent community of Nuiqsut and major federal agencies. It came together Dec. 19 when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued a permit for CD-5, the Alpine satellite which will be the first development built in NPR-A. “ConocoPhillips is pleased that the...
  • Feds OK ConocoPhillips Alaska North Slope project {Alaska NPRA}

    12/20/2011 5:12:34 AM PST · by thackney · 2 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | December 19, 2011 at 5:46 pm | Simone Sebastian
    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has approved a bridge-and-road project that will give ConocoPhillips access to the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska’s North Slope, the federal agency announced today. The Clean Water Act permit gives ConocoPhillips the go-ahead for its CD-5 Alpine Satellite Development Project. The oil company has long sought to drill and develop the area and needed the permits to build infrastructure connecting CD-5 to existing pipelines. The thumbs-up concludes a yearlong federal review and follows approvals earlier this month by the federal Environmental Protection Agency and the Fish and Wildlife Service. The permit allows Houston-based ConocoPhillips...
  • BREAKING NEWS: Agencies sign off on proposed Arctic bridge {Alaska NPRA}

    12/19/2011 2:17:14 PM PST · by thackney · 13 replies
    AP via Alaska Journal of Commerce ^ | Dec 19, 2011 - 12:45 PM AKST | DAN JOLING
    Two federal agencies have reached an agreement with ConocoPhillips Alaska that moves the company closer to building the first bridge and pipeline over the Colville River on Alaska's North Slope. The company wants access across the Arctic river to reach leases within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. Oil pumped from the leases would be the first production within the vast reserve. The Army Corps of Engineers in February 2010 denied a permit for the bridge and said a buried pipe would be less environmentally damaging. ConocoPhillips appealed, and the Corps sought a review of the project by the Environmental Protection Agency...
  • Shell investing billions in Alaska to chase ‘giant’ offshore opportunity

    12/19/2011 10:59:29 AM PST · by thackney · 30 replies · 1+ views
    Calgary Herald ^ | December 16, 2011 | Lisa Demer
    Standing in front of a brightly coloured, 3-D image of the geology far below the floor of the Chukchi Sea, Steve Phelps pointed to the “giant opportunity” that has prompted Shell to pour billions of dollars into the Alaska Arctic. “Burger — that’s the name you are going to get to know,” Phelps recently told reporters gathered here to learn about the huge oil company’s plans and promises for Alaska. Phelps is Shell’s Alaska exploration manager, a geologist whose job it is to find big oil. The Burger field, part of a Shell naming theme that revolved around junk food,...
  • Sides form for oil tax battle in Alaska Senate

    12/18/2011 2:38:37 PM PST · by thackney · 14 replies
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | December 18th, 2011 | SEAN COCKERHAM
    The Alaska Senate is about to enter a bruising debate over whether to slash how much Alaska taxes oil companies, with Senate President Gary Stevens calling the governor's tax cut plan a giveaway that could cost the state billions with little in return. "We have been asking the administration (of Gov. Sean Parnell) for months to give us some proof this will do Alaska some good," Stevens said last week. It's a debate likely to dominate the 90-day session of the Alaska Legislature that begins in Juneau on Jan. 17. The state House has already passed the governor's bill so...
  • To fuel our future, we need to go further, fast {Alaska Oil}

    12/18/2011 5:06:14 AM PST · by thackney · 4 replies
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | December 17th, 2011 | TIM BRADNER
    state budget, released Thursday along with state revenue and oil production forecasts, reflect some disturbing trends: less revenue, higher costs and trouble ahead. The budget proposal shows the kinds of forces driving the state operating budget ever upward, like increases in Medicaid, state employee contracts and a new prison. ... On the revenue side, we see continued declines in oil production in a state where oil revenues pay for 90 percent of the budget. There is a good reason to believe the state's production forecast is actually a tad optimistic: It includes new oil projects still being evaluated. If some...
  • ANS production down <Alaska North Slope Oil}

    12/17/2011 2:22:10 PM PST · by thackney · 27 replies · 1+ views
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of December 18, 2011 | Kristen Nelson
    The Alaska Department of Revenue’s fall forecast, released Dec. 15 as Petroleum News was going to press with this issue, shows a sharp decrease in forecast production compared to the spring forecast, with Alaska North Slope crude oil volumes dropping below 600,000 barrels per day beginning in the current fiscal year, 2012. In the spring forecast, Revenue was projecting production of more than 600,000 bpd through fiscal year 2017. Production is projected to average 574,000 bpd for FY 2012, dropping below the 500,000 bpd mark in FY 2020. In his cover letter to the governor, Revenue Commissioner Bryan Butcher said...
  • Agencies agree on bridge; Corps of Engineers decision this year {Alaska, NPRA, New Oil production}

    12/10/2011 6:08:31 AM PST · by thackney · 3 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of December 11, 2011 | Kristen Nelson
    A roadblock to development of ConocoPhillips’ CD-5 drill site in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska has been removed. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and the Environmental Protection Agency, which had opposed the company’s plan to put the crude oil pipeline from CD-5 to the company’s Alpine production facilities on a bridge to be built across the Nigliq Channel of the Colville River, have reached “an agreement in principle” with the company on the proposal. In a Dec. 5 announcement the U.S. Department of the Interior said the agreement fulfills a request from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that the...
  • Environmentalists mount fresh challenge against Shell’s Arctic drilling plans {Alaska offshore}

    11/29/2011 2:00:22 PM PST · by thackney · 9 replies · 1+ views
    Fuel Fix ^ | November 29, 2011 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    Environmentalists have opened a new front in their campaign to block Shell’s planned drilling in Arctic waters near Alaska, by challenging the government’s decision to issue the company essential air pollution permits for some of the work. At issue are Clean Air Act permits the Environmental Protection Agency issued last month for Shell Oil Co.’s Kulluk drillship and support vessels, which the firm plans to use while working on exploratory wells in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas starting next summer. Ten Alaskan and environmental groups appealed those permits before the EPA’s administrative Environmental Appeals Board on Monday. That builds on...
  • Budgets flat, down {AK tax change needed to make projects competitive}

    11/21/2011 7:14:40 AM PST · by thackney · 20 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of November 20, 2011 | Kristen Nelson
    Alaska’s current oil tax system is the biggest impediment to getting more oil into the trans-Alaska oil pipeline. And the biggest impediment to oil company investment in the state. That was the message the Resource Development Council’s annual conference heard Nov. 16 from BP Exploration (Alaska) and ConocoPhillips Alaska, operators of the major fields on Alaska’s North Slope. Trond-Erik Johansen, president of Conoco Phillips Alaska, and Claire Fitzpatrick, chief financial officer for the Alaska region and senior vice president of BP Exploration (Alaska), both said that if the state wants more oil in the pipeline, it needs to change its...
  • ANWR Bill Boosts Jobs, Domestic Energy Production

    11/15/2011 10:53:05 AM PST · by thackney · 7 replies
    Rig Zone ^ | November 15, 2011 | Andrea Mooney
    Citing an increase in domestic energy production and job creation, the House Natural Resources Committee proposed legislation Friday that would open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil and natural gas production. Committee Chairman Doc Hastings, of Washington, and Alaska Rep. Don Young announced plans to introduce the Alaskan Energy for American Jobs Act, which is part of the energy and infrastructure jobs bill announced by Ohio Rep. John Boehner in early November. Officials said the act would open less than 3 percent of ANWR's 19 million acres in the North Slope, which the U.S. Geological Survey estimates contains...
  • Alaska's per-capita GDP is 50% higher than US average

    10/26/2011 9:11:49 AM PDT · by thackney · 11 replies
    Anchorage Daily News ^ | : October 26th, 2011 | Associated Press
    Alaska had a $49 billion economy last year, with the largest single piece of that coming from oil and mining. ... oil and gas represented 25 percent of Alaska's GDP last year. He says this shows how far-reaching an impact that oil has in the state, given direct employment by the oil and gas industry makes up just 4 percent of total employment in the state.
  • Back to the court, Point Hope & environmentalists appeal BOEM Shell Beaufort plan approval

    10/09/2011 11:41:51 AM PDT · by thackney
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of October 09, 2011 | Alan Bailey
    In what has become something of a standard practice for any major Alaska oil and gas permitting decision, a group of organizations opposed to Arctic offshore oil and gas development has appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit over the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement’s Aug. 4 conditional approval of Shell’s Beaufort Sea exploration plan. Shell plans to drill up to four wells in the Beaufort Sea, starting in 2012, with those wells targeting the Sivulliq and Torpedo prospects on the west side of Camden Bay, to the east of Prudhoe Bay. In...