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Keyword: northslope

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  • Legislature approves TransCanada buyout

    11/05/2015 6:29:28 AM PST · by thackney · 18 replies
    Alaska Journal of Commerce ^ | 11/04/2015 | Tim Bradner
    The state of Alaska will now own more of the big Alaska LNG Project. It will have to shell out more money for it, too. Alaska's Permanent Fund may have to be put up as collateral, also. Legislators have been meeting in special session in Juneau since Oct. 24 to review Gov. Bill Walker's proposal for the state to buy out TransCanada's share of the planned $45 billion to $65 billion pipeline and liquefied gas project. On Nov. 3 and 4, the state Senate (16-3) and House (39-0) gave their approvals. The acquisition is to be effective Dec. 1, under...
  • Ambitious LNG Project Could Revive Alaska's Fortunes

    09/23/2015 5:36:13 AM PDT · by thackney · 1 replies
    Forbes ^ | SEP 22, 2015 | Brigham A. McCown
    Alaska was long at the vanguard of America’s energy industry. At one time the State of Alaska accounted for as much as one-quarter of the entire country’s domestic oil production. Alaska’s vast fields also served as a source of pride – and the backbone of the state’s economy. As production surged, it was common to hear industry men revel in the United States’ diminishing reliance on foreign supplies as they worked rigs up and down regional reserves. Yet, as energy development in the lower 48 has burgeoned over the past decade, those refrains have waned – as has production. Fed...
  • Why Native Alaskans Support Shell’s Arctic Drilling

    08/07/2015 7:22:34 AM PDT · by artichokegrower · 11 replies
    gCaptain ^ | August 6, 2015 | Paul Barrett
    Activists trying to stop Shell’s offshore oil drilling in the U.S.’s Arctic Ocean region invoke the interests of native Alaskans. “These communities depend on this environment for food and resources and have stewarded it for centuries,” Greenpeace says, as part of its “The People vs. Shell” campaign—what the group describes as possibly “the most important fight in environmental history.” A lot of native Alaskans, including many who live along the state’s North Slope, would prefer that Greenpeace mind its own business.
  • Another round of Slope methane hydrate research planned

    07/17/2015 9:11:34 AM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Another test of methane hydrates on the North Slope, a potential huge new gas resource, is being planned. State officials are in discussions with the U.S. Department of Energy and the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp., or JOGMC on possible joint-sponsorship, and talks are planned with North Slope producers about potential sites for a test within one of the operating units on the Slope, Commissioner of Natural Resources Mark Myers said. A technical evaluation of different sites is now underway, Myers said. Drilling within an existing industry unit is preferable for cost reasons but sites on nearby unleased...
  • Obama administration delivers big blow to Shell’s Arctic drilling plans

    07/02/2015 5:25:39 AM PDT · by thackney · 10 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | June 30, 2015 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    The Obama administration delivered a major blow to Shell’s Arctic drilling plans on Tuesday, by ruling that wildlife protections bar the company from simultaneously boring two wells into the Chukchi Sea this summer. The decision will force Shell to scale back its hopes of completing two exploratory oil wells in waters north of Alaska this summer and is another setback for the firm that has spent seven years and $7 billion trying to find crude in the Arctic Ocean. At issue is the Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision to allow sound from Shell’s planned drilling to disturb walruses, polar bears...
  • Oil exploration in the U.S. Arctic continues despite current price environment

    06/12/2015 5:49:05 AM PDT · by thackney · 4 replies
    Energy Information Administration ^ | JUNE 12, 2015 | Energy Information Administration
    Alaska's crude oil production has declined from 1.8 million barrels per day (MMb/d) in 1991 to 0.5 MMb/d in 2014, and it is expected to continue declining through 2040. Almost 75% of Alaska's crude oil production from 1990 to 2012 was from the Prudhoe Bay and Kuparuk River fields in the central North Slope, which respectively produced 4.9 billion and 1.7 billion barrels of crude oil over this period. Crude oil production in Alaska is sensitive to the challenging environment—including variable ice conditions and limited time without ice coverage—as well as pipeline economics. However, recent conditional approval granted to Royal...
  • CD-5 upheld, production to begin in December {oil, NPRA}

    06/02/2015 8:10:10 AM PDT · by thackney · 13 replies
    Alaska Journal of Commerce ^ | 2015.05.27 | TIM BRADNER
    In what is likely the final action in a lengthy environmental lawsuit against ConocoPhillips’ CD-5 project on the North Slope, U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason denied the plaintiff’s final motion for a summary judgment to invalidate the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Record of Decision and permits for the project. The suit was filed in 2013 by several residents of Nuiqsut, a nearby Inupiat village. The project itself, a satellite of the producing Alpine oil field near the Colville River, has been under construction since 2013 and is nearing completion. Although Gleason ruled in 2014 that the Corps did...
  • Exxon Mobil gets DOE approval for wider LNG exports at Alaska terminal

    06/02/2015 8:05:03 AM PDT · by thackney · 3 replies
    Dallas Business Journal ^ | Jun 1, 2015 | Nicholas Sakelaris
    Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil Corp. said June 1 it received authorization to export liquefied natural gas to non-free trade agreement countries at its Alaska LNG terminal. The proposed project received conditional authorization from the U.S. Department of Energy to export up to 20 million metric tons per year of LNG for 30 years. The terminal previously received authorization to export to countries with U.S. trade agreements. “As with any large scale LNG project, access to as many markets as possible will improve the commercial viability of the proposed project,” Steve Butt, Alaska LNG senior project manager, said in a statement....
  • Administration Gives Conditional Approval for Shell to Drill in Arctic

    05/11/2015 1:18:36 PM PDT · by Theoria · 36 replies
    The New York Times ^ | 11 May 2015 | Coral Davenport
    The Obama administration gave conditional approval on Monday for Shell Gulf of Mexico, Inc. to start drilling for oil and gas in the Arctic Ocean this summer. The approval is a major victory for Shell and the rest of the petroleum industry, which has sought for years to drill in the remote waters of the Chukchi seas, which are believed to hold vast reserves of oil and gas. “We have taken a thoughtful approach to carefully considering potential exploration in the Chukchi Sea, recognizing the significant environmental, social and ecological resources in the region and establishing high standards for the...
  • Promising results, DOE publishes more findings from North Slope methane hydrate test well

    04/25/2015 8:17:05 AM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of April 26, 2015 | Alan Bailey
    The National Energy Technology Laboratory has published some new results from methane hydrate testing carried out in 2011 and 2012 in the Ignik Sikumi test well on Alaska’s North Slope. According to an article in the latest edition of NETL’s Fire in Ice publication, the results shed light on the potential use of injected carbon dioxide as a means of producing natural gas from methane hydrate deposits, while also demonstrating that producing gas by depressuring the deposits may work more easily than previously thought. Methane hydrate is a naturally occurring solid that traps concentrated volumes of methane, the primary component...
  • BLM clears way for petroleum reserve development

    02/16/2015 5:07:21 AM PST · by thackney · 7 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | February 14, 2015 | Associated Press
    The U.S. Bureau of Land Management issued a final decision Friday that it said will open the way for the first oil and gas production from federal lands in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. The decision is a shift from the alternative that BLM had earlier selected as its preferred option. But it aligns with the alternative chosen by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. BLM-Alaska spokeswoman Lesli Ellis-Wouters said BLM had indicated it would take into account the Corps’ decision in making its final determination. If the two agencies were not on the same page, ConocoPhillips Alaska would not have...
  • Obama’s Executive Overreach at It Again: This Time, It’s ANWR

    02/01/2015 9:11:54 AM PST · by Libloather · 12 replies
    Right Side News ^ | 1/30/15 | IER
    On Sunday, President Obama announced that he will recommend to Congress that it should designate 12 million acres in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) as wilderness.[i] When briefing the press about the plan, Presidential Advisor John Podesta said that regardless of the law and Congressional action, the administration was going to manage these 12 million acres as if it had been designated as wilderness by Congress. That means that ANWR will be unavailable to resource development. In 1980, Congress set aside some of the acreage in ANWR (the “1002 area,” comprising the Coastal Plain) for future consideration of oil...
  • Let Alaska decide (Saturbray)

    01/31/2015 6:36:16 AM PST · by bray · 8 replies ^ | 1/31/15 | bray
    Genesis 14:21 The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the people and keep the goods for yourself.” Just as the price of gas is reaching levels Americans can both go to the grocery store and fill their cars in the same week, our Glorious Premier Obozo decides to close the remainder of the ANWAR desert to oil exploration. This oil reserve holds more than thirty years of energy for America and would further stabilize the price of gas, but Marxists like him hate cheap oil so he is closing this production by edict. Alaskans want to develop and...
  • Feds set ground rules for ConocoPhillips project in Alaska

    10/30/2014 4:52:12 AM PDT · by thackney · 19 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | October 29, 2014 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    ConocoPhillips’ plans for the first oil production facilities from federal lands in Alaska moved one step closer to reality Wednesday, as the Interior Department released a key environmental study on the project. Although it is not a final verdict, the assessment by Interior’s Bureau of Land Management sets the stage for approval later this year by outlining steps ConocoPhillips would have to take to mitigate environmental effects while boring up to 33 wells at its Greater Mooses Tooth site. “Reaching this stage of permitting is a major milestone for the project and for the future of balanced, responsible federal oil...
  • A hive of activity, Drilling rig returning to Point Thomson as field development continues

    10/26/2014 6:06:01 PM PDT · by thackney · 7 replies
    Petroleum News ^ | Week of October 26, 2014 | Alan Bailey
    ExxonMobil is activating the powerful Nabors 27E drilling rig, for transportation by ice road in the coming winter to the company’s huge Point Thomson gas condensate field on the North Slope, company executives told Petroleum News Oct. 16. The rig will continue drilling operations that were started at the field several years ago. With up to 1,200 people and 70 Alaska companies involved in activities ranging from gravel laying to pipeline installation, field development has been moving steadily ahead, said Nathan Sanborn, project manager for the Point Thomson Initial Production System. The company has spent the last couple of years...
  • 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 |
    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, 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...