November 2010 Archives
Representative Mike Hawker (NGP Photo-r)
Mary Ann Pease (NGP Photo-r)
Will Chinn, Price-Gregory
Representative Bob Lynn (NGP Photo-below)
Yesterday was the announced deadline for public comment on the government's Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Chukchi Sea. We received some new comment today (left column) and you can see those who commented yesterday, here. We also know that hundreds of 'comment cards' reflected Alaskans' support for Chukchi development though we fear that the enormous, grass roots network mobilized over the years by environmental activists could have produced tens ofthousands of comments from around the country. Too bad comments weren't restricted to Alaskans. We'll report the final results when they are in. Meanwhile, if several of you still want to comment, email a fax or document expressing your support for Chukchi development to BOEMREAKPublicCommen@boemre.gov, as we understand the agency (BOEM) has extended the deadline by a day. -dh
Peninsula Clarion by Michael Armstrong. What would have to happen to make the Alaska natural gas pipeline a reality?That's the $26 billion question Alaskans have to ask if they want the state's long-hoped for project to get built. Tuesday night at the Alaska Islands and Ocean Visitor Center, Larry Persily (NGP Photo), federal coordinator for the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Projects, spoke at a town meeting to update Homer on the pipeline.
DO YOU THINK WE EXAGGERATE?
Dear Reader: Today, November 29, 2010 is the deadline the federal government has established for giving your opinion on whether the Chukchi Sea Lease Sale process should go forward. (Send us your Comments and we'll post them here.) Secretary Ken Salazar (NGP Photo-r), the Obama Administration and their activist allies have done everything possible to delay/derail this process. Alaska Governor Sean Parnell's (NGP Photo-l) Administration has consistently defended the state against Federal overreach. Sidelining energy exploration in and around Alaska will terminate the State's potential for economic survival for the many reasons we have discussed here over the last two years. Eliminating Alaska's energy contribution to the Nation will disrupt the recovery, endanger national security, further debase the currency and export hundreds of thousands of American jobs--along with our national wealth--to countries that are committed to resource development.
Don't think you don't know enough to comment; you do! If you've already commented, distribute these links to friends and family. Ask your elected officials: legislators, mayors, assembly members if they've commented. Have your say by using one of these websites:
1. Consumer Energy Alliance, and
Below, we note a few of the comments readers have provided us. Send us more and we'll post them! We also have evidence that thousands of Alaskans and friends throughout America are commenting--both for and against Alaska energy! What shall it be? What say you?
Charles P. Thomas, PhD. TiorCo
Steve Borrell, P.E., Alaska Miners Association
Jim Gilbert, Udelhoven Oil Field Services
Senator-elect Cathy Giessel, Alaska State Senate
Dave Harbour, Northern Gas Pipelines Publisher
Doris Hugo-Shavings, a tribal member of the Inupiat Community of the Arctic
Representative Craig Johnson, Alaska State House of Representatives
Carl Portman, Resource Development Council for Alaska
Senator Gary Wilkin, Alaska State Senate (Retired)
Kate Williams, Alaska Oil and Gas Association
Other Alaskans we observed testifying at a November 9, 2010 BOEM hearing included: Tom and Sam Maloney, Steve Pratt, Len Horst, John Shively, Dave Chaput, Ted Danson, Paula Easley, Jeanine St. John, Tom Hendrix, Maynard Tapp, Rebecca Logan, Joe Hegna, Jim Udelhoven, Sami Glascott, Vince Beltrami, Barbara Huff, Kurt Jackson, Keith Silver, Christine Klein, Chris Warren, Aves Thompson, Jeff Jones and many others! (See our 11-9-10 event photos.)
PLANNING FOR THANKSGIVING TOMORROW IN ALASKA-AMERICA AND REMEMBERING OCTOBER'S SECOND MONDAY THANKSGIVING IN CANADA
("WHEREAS it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favour....")
("...Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.")
("Join Hands and Thank the Creator....")
COMMENT: Tomorrow I join you in giving thanks for God's magnificent blessing on this land and people. The 'hope and change' I hope readers join me in praying for is:
hope that our Heavenly Father enables us to overcome the damage being done to our State and Union by those who stray so far from the founding principles of the country, and
change...radical change...back to our constitutional principles and protections erected on that rock-solid foundation: the Christian faith of our fathers.
Below, I share with readers a historical review of America's Thanksgiving provided by historian, Newt Gingrich. If Americans do not come to our senses, and if we reject this history, heritage, culture and Christian commitment, we thereby abandon freedom's foundation and inherit the wind which blows us unprotected, in unpredictable directions to uncertain ends.
Happy Thanksgiving. -DH
Most Americans, however, remember that the Thanksgiving Day tradition was modeled after the 1621 event in Plymouth, Massachusetts where fifty Pilgrims and ninety Wampanoag Indians feasted for three days. The Pilgrims were indeed thankful for friendship and a bountiful harvest. In the previous year, half of the Pilgrims had starved to death. A Patuxet Indian named Squanto came to their rescue helping them to survive in the New World.
Throughout our history, Americans were called hundreds of times by their leaders to days of fasting and prayer and subsequent days of thanksgiving often by local officials and governors.
But it was President George Washington at the request of the Congress, who on October 3, 1789 issued the first national Thanksgiving Day Proclamation from New York City. Setting aside November 26, the proclamation stated that "our duty as a people, with devout reverence and affectionate gratitude, to acknowledge our many and great obligations to Almighty God and to implore Him to continue and confirm the blessings we experience."
Washington issued his second Thanksgiving Day Proclamation in 1795. Presidents Adams, Jefferson and Madison all issued proclamation calling for a day of Thanksgiving.
But few Americans gathering this week with family and friends for the feast know about the woman most credited with making Thanksgiving Day a national holiday.
Buell became one of the most influential women in the United States as the editor of the most widely circulated women's magazine called Godey's Lady's Book. She also penned "Mary Had a Little Lamb," the most-well-known poem in American history.
But it was not until 1863, when Abraham Lincoln received her letter in the midst of the Civil War that the New England tradition would become a national one. "If every state would join in Thanksgiving," she wrote, "would it not be a renewed pledge of love and loyalty to the Constitution?" Lincoln agreed.
He set apart the last Thursday of November as a day of "Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens." He called upon Americans "that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union."
Lincoln would issue three more Thanksgiving Proclamations from the White House. Subsequent presidents issued similar proclamations but the states chose different days for the thanksgiving observance. It was not until 1934 that Franklin Delano Roosevelt said that to “set aside in the autumn of each year a day on which to give thanks to Almighty God for the blessings of life is a wise and reverent custom, long cherished by our people." In 1941, the Congress made the third Thursday of November an official national holiday.
UNALASKA, AK (KUCB) - The last of the active North Aleutian basin natural leases have been dropped. Hewitt Mineral Corporation let go its four leases in October, two years after Shell relinquished the 33 leases it possessed. Hewitt's leases covered over 22,000 acres on the Alaska Peninsula. The company had hoped to develop a liquefied natural gas plant on the peninsula as well as a pipeline. But a number of challenges have caused Hewitt to release its stake, says company president William Dolman. "Shell released theirs a couple of years ago, and we wanted to stay with it and see if there was any interest outside of Shell that could also join us. And we did our due diligence as far as interest on the Peninsula and got into negotiations with a few companies, but it never panned out."
Governor Sean Parnell (NGP Photo-r) chose the Resource Development Council for Alaska forum yesterday to announce a shuffling of his Cabinet. Among the changes described were his appointment of Attorney General Dan Sullivan (NGP Photo-l) to the post of Natural Resources Commissioner. We'll have a very complete review of the RDC conference for readers on the Monday posting, along with many photos of speakers and trade show vendors. Meanwhile, here's a brief ADN story by Becky Bohrer.
- We'll provide more stories and photos on the RDC conference this weekend; meanwhile, here is the exciting agenda. Here's an Alaska Dispatch Story by Patti Epler. (Photo: RDC President Tom Maloney opening the two day conference yesterday.)
- ...and here's RDC's Carl Portman with an outstanding review of last week's BOEM hearing.
- Then, there's our Op-Ed appearing this week in Petroleum News Alaska's annual oil and gas Explorers Magazine.
The Annual Conference of the Resource Development Council for Alaska opens today in Anchorage to what we expect to be a standing room only audience. Scroll down to read our commentary which debuts today in a special insert produced for this conference. By Saturday, we'll also complete our NARUC entry in yesterday's posting. -dh
ADN by Elizabeth Bluemink. Tom Barrett (NGP Photo coming), 63, is scheduled to begin working at the company, which operates the 800-mile trans-Alaska pipeline, on Jan. 1. Barrett is taking the helm at a time when the pipeline faces a major turning point: As oil production from the North Slope oil fields is dwindling, the pipeline company has been cutting costs, relocating employees and studying how many years longer it can continue to operate the pipeline without a major new infusion of oil.
Feds Assault Alaska's Economy - Canada Moves Closer to Mackenzie Pipeline Approval - Arctic Source for Terrorism? - NARUC Hears Consumer Messages
CBC. The proposed $16.2-billion Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline is a step closer to reality after the federal and Northwest Territories governments agreed Monday with most of the recommendations set out by a review panel last year. ... "Should the [project] proceed, it will do so within a responsible environmental stewardship framework," federal Environment Minister John Baird said in a release * (Comment: We appear to be at Step 3 in the overall regulatory process, wherein the National Energy Board (NEB) will consider the new evidence and provide a final decision, and reasons therefore, to the Cabinet. The Federal government could still disapprove the project. However, we believe it unlikely that the Cabinet would move against an NEB decision falling in either direction. Overall, we are hopeful for our dedicated Canadian friends who--having endured an almost endless regulatory process--are now close to grasping an economic victory from the jaws of nearly defeated, tenacious critics.. While the overall regulatory process has been continuously extended and enlarged to accommodate more and more 'stakeholder' voices over the past decade, we are fans of the dependable, timely decision making process employed by the NEB. Consequently, we anticipate an early end to the Mackenzie Valley Gas Pipeline Application drama and the beginning of a more hopeful construction permitting process -- assuming that market dynamics and the patience of investors still wish to free the stranded gas volumes of Arctic Canada. -dh)
Alaska Dispatch. Newly declassified intelligence assessment raises the spectre of the North as a conduit for international or domestic radicals.
(8:00 a.m. note: A few minutes ago on CNBC, former Shell President John Hofmeister accused the federal government of encouraging a 'starvation' of hydrocarbon due to federal regulatory policies that are resulting in less production of oil and gas. "We need more access toward hydrocarbons", he said. "I don't know that the Administration either understands or cares about the inability of industry to obtain permits." He said practical every day people need energy and this administration is looking about how to satisfy some constituents but ignoring gulf coast residents. "i think it is wrong and I will keep talking about it," he said. Thorugh his own lense he is validating the Obama Administration's 'death by a thousand cuts' campaign we have been revealing for the last year and a half.- dh)
(Note: As always, we invite input from those featured on our pages to provide us with additions/corrections to our stories or to stories with which we link. We strive to properly reflect the views of citizens. -dh)
Yesterday in Atlanta's Omni Hotel, NARUC Gas Committee Chairman Tim Simon (NGP Photo-above, with FERC Commissioner Marc Spitzer) of California introduced the Committee's Co-Vice-Chairs: Commissioner Colette Honorable (NGP Photo-l) of Arkansas and Commissioner Matt Baker (NGP Photo-r) of Colorado. Simon then drew attention to a resolution naming former Chairman O'Neal Hamilton (NGP Photo-below, right, with Tennessee Commissioner Eddie Roberson looking on) "Chairman Emeritus". Simon also complimented Hamilton for his many accomplishments including the Moratoria study and organization of the consumer panel, a verthat y brief summary of which appears below. Note that these panel members provide critical services to a majority of America's residential, corporate and governmental consumers.
Chairman Simon turned the meeting over to Louisiana Commissioner Jimmy Field (NGP Photo-l) who emphasized the importance to national defense and a recovering economy that decision makers forge a sustainable energy policy. After offering several personal observations he introduced panel members:
Costantinos Apostolakos (NGO Photo-l) is General Manager, Fuel Supply Chain Management for Delta Airlines. He acquainted commissioners with the heavy reliance of America's airline and air cargo businesses -- along with consumer travel and shipping costs -- on fossil fuel prices. He encouraged commissioners to keep in mind that energy regulation seems to be turning into a process for taxation rather than for provision of adequate supplies of energy at reasonable prices.
Jim Tramuto (NGP Photo-r) is Vice President......
NARUC STORY AND PHOTOS UNDER DEVELOPMENT; PLEASE COME BACK FRIDAY. FOR NEW POSTINGS, PHOTOS AND FOR HYPERLINKS TO INDIVIDUAL POWER POINT PRESENTATIONS....
At 9 a.m. today, Members of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) will focus on consumer energy issues, hearing from companies and organizations serving virtually all American citizens, companies, governments and utility rate payers. The forum will occur in NARUC's Gas committee agenda.
While the program today was organized under the leadership of the Committee's Chairman, Commissioner O'Neal Hamilton of South Carolina. Yesterday, NARUC honored Hamilton as 'Chairman Emeritus' in conjunction with California Commissioner Timothy Simon's appointment as Gas Committee Chairman during the coming year. Commissioners Colette Honorable of Arkansas and Matt Baker of Colorado will serve as Gas Committee Co9-Chairmen (i.e. a position once held by your author).
|-||11:45 AM||Committee on Gas||International BC|
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|9:00 AM||How Current and Proposed Energy Policy affects American Consumers/Ratepayers
This panel consists of senior representatives of key consuming organizations representing the majority of U.S. energy consumers. Their objective will be to assist commissioners in understanding how current and proposed energy policies affect American consumers/ratepayers.
Point of personal privilege (with NGP photos): I was both honored and delighted yesterday (Sunday, November 14, 2010), to spend five minutes with Dr. Charles Stanley in his office before the 9 a.m. service at his First Baptist Church of Atlanta. We discussed faith, photography and his visit to Alaska next year. His 'Veterans Day' sermon also focused on the types of love, including agape. I don't regard Dr. Stanley as a preacher but as one of my lifelong teachers. His gentle and astute analysis of agape shed light on some of its characteristics, including selflessness, forgiveness, understanding and lack of conditions. Contributing to the poignancy of the day was the pleasure of having Kifle Donni, my taxi driver, accompany me to the service. It was a very moving experience for this student. -dh
About Tuesday Night's Federal OCS Hearing In Alaska
Commentary: NGP Readers know this webpage is non-partisan. We encouraged all democrat and republican elected officials by personal email to weigh in at the BOEM hearing Tuesday (Scroll down for details). Alaska news media publicized the event. As if explanation were needed, we repeated in these pages and in our emails the reasons why approval of OCS exploration of the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas can be safely done and must be done to save Alaska's economy. We made a point that with an Obama administration determining much of Alaska's future it is especially important for elected officials of his party in Alaska to defend Alaska's interests to him.
The bad news is that we didn't see any republican or democrat member of Alaska's Congressional Delegation at the hearing. We saw only one Mayor from Alaska represented and no other local elected officials--though Anchorage Assemblyman Chris Birch has a near-perfect federal hearing attendance record. We saw few elected officials of the state and NO democrats were among them.
The good news was very good. The room was crowded. Most were pro-OCS. We think most were NGP readers. Most of the testimony favored expedited OCS exploration. Governor Sean Parnell has been stalwart in defending Alaska against federal overreach and sent his Oil and Gas Director, Kevin Banks. Mayor Dan Sullivan attended a required Assembly meeting but sent his Governmnet Relations Director, Stacy Schubert. Anchorage's Republican Representative Craig Johnson delivered a stirring, extemporaneous argument justifying expedited federal approval of OCS activity, as did Representative Bill Stoltze of Eagle River. Senator-elect Cathy Giessel attended and provided written testimony (below). The AFL-CIO, Teamsters, Alaska Support Industry Alliance, Alaska Trucking Association, several Alaska Natives, private citizens, scientists, media representatives and economists appeared along with the Resource Development Council for Alaska. Citizen Rick Braun offered the only testimony of the evening to elicit an expemporaneous, thundering ovation from the crowd.
We still think elected officials who are democrats might care enough to comment and herewith invite, beg, plea, emplore them to join with republicans who did not weigh in and submit written comments to the BOEM now. Send a copy to us and we will post it here.
From: Cathy Giessel < email@example.com>