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      This is your public service 1-stop-shop for Alaskan and Canadian Arctic energy commentary, news, history, projects and people. We update it daily for you. It is the most timely and complete northern energy archive anywhere — used by media, academia, government and industry officials throughout the world. Northern Gas Pipelines may be the oldest Alaska blog; we invite readers to name others existing before 2001.  -dh


August 2009 Archives

TransCanada and Denali to File by 2012 - Southcentral Utilities Working on Winter Contingency Plan - New Tax and Royalty Structure for Brazil (Will Greed Discount the Opportunity As In Alaska?)- Praising John and Sammye Seawell

28 August 2009 10:01am

RIO DE JANEIRO -(Dow Jones), by Jeff Fick- Brazil's government is set to unveil a sweeping reform of regulations covering the oil and natural gas industries Monday, likely sparking a political fight that will reverberate for generations.     PNA by Alan Bailey (NGP Photo) Faced with the strong possibility of a shortfall in utility natural gas deliverability in the event of a severe cold snap in the coming Southcentral Alaska winter, gas and electric utilities around the region are completing a contingency plan, to try to avert the need for power cuts and to ensure that, if power cuts are required, the impact on power consumers is minimized.        *     UPI.  TransCanada and Denali are expected to file federal permits for their rival natural gas pipelines to the lower 48 by October 2012.  TransCanada and Denali, a joint venture between BP and ConocoPhillips, are competing to develop a natural gas pipeline from the Alaskan North Slope. TransCanada has state support for the project but lacks federal approval. Denali, for its part, is spending its own money to develop the pipeline.     *     Three points of personal privilege:  First, John Seawell (NGP Photo), passed away this week in Anchorage. A friend for nearly 40 years, and a generation ahead of me, he always took time to help the younger man trying to do well.  This photo of John and Sammye after a wonderful Thanksgiving 2008 dinner at Josephine’s in the Sheraton reflects very well the kind natures of this loving and dynamic duo. It was also a special dinner for Nancy, Billy and me at the next table with Mom (Bobbie Harbour), who passed away herself in February. Second, Nancy Harbour provided a great interview for Channel Two on the coming of Lion King.  Third, I briefly discussed oil industry tax policy with Dan Fagan and Jeff Jones (at 51 min 25 sec). 


We Alert America: Obama's Ocean Policy Task Force Could Benefit Russia and Canada at America's Expense!

26 August 2009 7:29am

NGP Copyrighted Photo of Secretary Ken Salazar by Dave Harbour_4-14-09

Commentary:  As Canadian and Russian forces are seeking to claim and protect their oil and gas rich Arctic territory, our President seems intent on regulating America away from a 'seat at the table'.   Alaskans have joined other Americans in responding to Interior Secretary Salazar's (NGP Photo) call for comments regarding his Minerals Management Service (MMS) 2010-15 Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) lease sale plan.  The preponderance of comment seems to favor more exploration and  drilling, under America's safe and demanding regulatory process; most Americans support decreased reliance on foreign suppliers and increased domestic production along with the employment and revenue OCS would produce.  However, President Obama’s White House staff and other Administration executives composing an Ocean Policy Task Force met last Friday for a hearing in Anchorage.  Many environmental and Native activists flooded the Anchorage Convention Center for an Ocean Policy Hearing and mostly dominated the dialogue with a 'no development' message.   (Although one appreciates the more reasonable testimony provided by Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, the Resource Development Council for Alaska and a few others.)  The most dangerous element of a hastily constructed 'ocean policy' is that its pronouncements could override planned OCS leasing and exploration and development--and even on-shore activity.  After all, if an ocean policy says that Arctic critters are threatened by receding ice caused by carbon emissions/global warming/greenhouse gasses, then it could order the cessation of such emissions...from oil and gas operations and even from far-away, lower 48 emitting sources like transportation, manufacturing, mining, and even the evacuation of carbon-based gasses from farm animals.  Meanwhile, the Canadians and Russians will be less encumbered with such affectation and remain focused on the important goal: obtain and protect as much oil and gas producing Arctic territory as possible while controlling Arctic transportation and sea lanes in the process.  Let's watch this issue develop.  The Task Force can only make 'recommendations'; but Obama White House recommendations to a friendly Congress inclined to support every single environmental initiative--amid the chaos of current TARP/Clunker/CIA/Health Care dialogue--should awaken all thinking Americans concerned about jobs, national defense, energy security and a strong economy.    See Harbour testimony here.   See White House Task Force Memorandum and Web Page...and Provide Your Comment Here.      -dh   *        Dickenson Press by Lisa Call.  A pipeline slated to move about 477 million cubic feet of natural gas per day through southwest North Dakota is moving into the next stages of becoming a reality.  Bison Pipeline, LLC, a subsidiary of TransCanada Corp. ....   


Questioning the Value of the Gas Pipeline Open Seasons.... Questioning the Probability of Alaska's Economic Savior: OCS.... Hensley Questions Pipeline Survival In Wake of Palin Departure

25 August 2009 5:31am

 The Alaska Standard, By Alex Gimarc.  Shortly after taking office, the Obama administration...put a six-month halt on oil and natural gas exploration off the Alaska coast. The most prominent location was the Chukchi Sea, which held a federal lease sale in early 2008, bringing lease revenues worth $2.1 billion to the US Treasury.

Mackenzie Pipeline Dead?

20 August 2009 7:47am

 National Post by Peter Foster.

Northern Canadian Development Encounters Social Issues - Will Alaska's Gas Pipeline Materialize from Hope or Strategy?

19 August 2009 8:11am

Alaska Standard.  For 30 years Alaskans have also held onto the hope that a gas pipeline would be built, providing a new economic boom and a long-lasting tax base that could replace the inevitable decline of state tax revenues based on oil production. Today Alaska seems poised to realize this dream, but major unresolved obstacles could easily delay or end this project. ...  With Sarah Palin’s (NGP Photo) resignation, it’s now up to Gov. Sean Parnell (NGP Photo) to develop a long-term fiscal plan for Alaska.  Another critical challenge Palin left to Parnell is the question of long-term fiscal certainty for producers of Alaska’s natural gas resources. Each of the major leaseholders in Prudhoe Bay and Pt. Thompson, the fields that are initially expected to provide gas to the pipeline, have made it crystal clear that a successful gas pipeline project is dependent on linking the period of fiscal certainty with the length of the commitments producers must make to their customers.     *  Montreal Gazette.  ... the North has been Canada's El Dorado .... Robert Service, James Houston, and many others have implanted the region so deeply into Canada's consciousness that when Doug and Bob Mackenzie spoke of the "Great White North," Canadians laughed but also recognized a stereotype that resonates as part of our national identity. ... Fifty years after John Diefenbaker's "roads to resources" program, the North is more open and less mysterious.... Several countries, including the U.S. and Russia, are showing interest in what's starting to look like a 21st-century approximation of the 19th-century scramble for Africa. ...Stephen Harper has headed up North this week. He goes up every year, but only in the summer. This year he's holding a cabinet meeting there, having seal meat for lunch, and providing lots of photo opportunities.  ... The Russians say they'll drop paratroops at the North Pole next spring, a publicity stunt surpassing anything Canada can manage.    *     ReutersGrowing volumes of crude oil from Canada and the Gulf of Mexico should assure U.S. Gulf Coast refiners adequate supplies for years to come despite fast-declining imports from Mexico and Venezuela.

Is Energy Czar Inconsistent with ANGDA?

17 August 2009 7:42am

Examiner.  Last February, Sarah Palin created the position of natural gas pipeline czar.  Sarah appointed Harry Noah, who was Executive Director of Mental Health Trust Lands.