ADN. Gov. Sean Parnell on Friday introduced legislation to move ahead on his proposal to make the state a financial partner with Alaska's oil producers and pipeline company TransCanada in a liquefied natural gas project.
The state already has signed commercial agreements with the industry players, and Senate Bill 138 aims to put that framework into law.
The 49-page measure calls for a new subsidiary of the public Alaska Gasline Development Corporation to own shares in an LNG plant and marine terminal proposed for Nikiski where the liquefied gas would be shipped out on tankers to Asia. But the state may not end up owning a piece of the pipeline itself.
Petroleum News, by Kristen Nelson. Alaska Legislature gaveled in Jan. 22. In Gov. Sean Parnell’s state of the state address Jan. 23, and the Democratic response which followed, gas pipeline issues were highlighted as significant for the session, and party lines on the issue appeared drawn.
Oil & Gas Journal by Christopher Smith. ExxonMobil Corp., BP
PLC, ConocoPhillips, TransCanada Corp., Alaska Gasline Development Corp. (AGDC), and Alaska’s commissioners of natural resources and revenue have signed a heads of agreement (HOA) for the Alaska LNG Project, laying the commercial framework for development of an 800-mile natural gas pipeline to transport production from the Alaska North Slope (ANS) to a 15-18 million tonne/year LNG plant on its south-central coast.
Meet Alaska Part II
THIS MORNING IN WASHINGTON: You Read It Here First!
U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (NGP Photo) today sent a letter to President Obama urging him to lift the prohibition on exporting crude oil produced in the United States. Doing so, Murkowski wrote, will allow American producers to access global markets, which will boost production, protect jobs, and increase our energy security.
Murkowski called on President Obama to take a leadership role on lifting the export ban and offered her support in Congress.
“Your leadership will be critical to our success in this endeavor,” Murkowski wrote to the president. “In particular, I would draw your attention to the status of our nation’s hydrocarbon trade. While exports of our natural gas and petroleum products have grown, our work is far from finished, and our policies are, in some cases, far from adequate.
“Despite the obvious geopolitical, economic, and environmental benefits of building out our nation’s liquefaction capacity as soon as possible, the Department of Energy continues to slow-walk its approval of export licenses to our allies. The Keystone XL pipeline, which the State Department estimated would support over 42,000 jobs, remains unapproved even after years of delay. I once again urge you to take immediate action on these infrastructure projects, which you have generally promised to champion,” Murkowski continued.
The administration retains the authority to lift the ban on its own. The U.S. Commerce Department can authorize a swap if domestic crude cannot be marketed in the United States. The president can also issue a national interest determination.
“Lifting the prohibition on crude oil exports also presents us with a rare opportunity to work together in a bipartisan fashion to address this situation before it becomes a problem,” Murkowski wrote. “Together, we can send a strong signal to the world that the United States is ready to lead on energy, the environment, and trade. Lifting the ban will help create jobs, boost the economy, and keep our production at record levels.”
The full text of Murkowski’s letter to the president is available on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee website. Murkowski sent similar letters to the State, Energy, and Commerce departments, and to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which can be found in the documents section under letters.
Murkowski, the energy panel’s top Republican, released a white paper on energy exports last week. The paper, A Signal to the World: Renovating the Architecture of U.S. Energy Exports, is available on the committee’s website, as is supporting analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service.
See our 1-7-14 Story (You read it here first!)
Yesterday we pretty much focused on various aspects of Governor Sean Parnell’s (NGP Photo) announcement at Friday’s Meet Alaska conference, that all major gas pipeline/LNG project parties had reached, “alignment”.
Today, we recognize the people represented at the Alaska Support Industry Alliance’s annual “Meet Alaska” event -- and what they said -- for the benefit of our thousands of Asian, Canadian and US readers who were not present.
ConocoPhillips' Exploration & Production Executive Vice President based much of his presentation on Alaska's competitive positioning in the world oil and gas market.
Matt Fox (NGP Photo) told the audience that his company -- the largest oil & gas exploration company in the world -- would be spending most of its available capital on development and on major projects. (See Fox's slide presentation here.)
While noting his company's interest and investment in the Eagle Ford, Bakken, Permian Basin and other prospective oil & gas areas of the world, Fox also reminded the audience that, "International LNG is a global commodity as well as oil."
He said that the shale phenomenon has provided the United States with a hundred years of supply on a very flat supply curve, "...stabilizing the price range for a long time to come."
While Russian and North Sea gas supply sets prices in Europe, a recent $16 Mcf price in Japan -- still exacerbated by the nuclear accident -- provides Alaska with a window of opportunity.
However, he said, "we have to make sure that we have confidence in Alaska's fiscal regime."
"Competition is incredible," he said, adding that Alaska's recent enactment of production tax reform (SB 21) was already stimulating more investment in the state.
"You have to go back quite a ways to find where we spent more money on Alaska North Slope (ANS) than now, following passage of SB 21."
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The Alliance also represents Alaskan mining support industries and National Mining Association president Hal Quinn (NGP Photo) addressed the state's competitive challenges.
Quinn emphasized the importance of allowing oil, gas and mining industries to be free to export and engage in the world market, noting that coal not only provides the U.S. with 40% of its electrical supply but coal supplies 40% of world electric supplies as well".
Maintaining a vibrant world market that supplies reliable energy is critical, he said, noting that India's labor force alone is projected to grow at a rate of 1 million/month.
Minerals provide 15% of America's Gross Domestic Product he said. (We further observe that reasonably priced energy supplies are the foundation upon which other mineral exploration and development and manufacture is based. -dh)
After Quinn criticized the EPA for exercising federal overreaching authority that could stop a lawful mining project before it has filed for a permit (See our earlier commentary), he also cautioned the audience about unjustified delays in the federal permitting process. "No one should ever confuse the rigor of the permitting process with its length," he said. (See Quinn's presentation here.)
ExxonMobil's Gina Dickerson (NGP Photo) provided an encouraging update of activities aimed at accessing the ANS gas and gas liquids potential at Point Thomson.
As project manager, Dickerson briefed the audience on the project's three wells (i.e. two for production and one for injection); the 17" pipeline to Badami facilities; the nearly $2 billion spent on the project to date, 70% of which has been spent in Alaska; a 48 mile winter ice road to the Endicott's accessible facilities, and the dramatic 2-year progress toward completing an airstrip and support facilities. (See Dickerson's presentation here.)
Today's Consumer Energy Alliance Clips:
90.5 WESA - NPR: Energy Alliance: Fracking Is Not a 'Four-Letter Word'. An energy supply and consumption watchdog group is taking its fight against a proposed moratorium on shale drilling in Pennsylvania to the lawmakers sponsoring the bill and to their constituents. The Consumer Energy Alliance sent a letter to State Sen. Jim Ferlo (D-Allegheny) asking him to pull the legislation from consideration. SB 1100 was introduced in September and was referred to the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee where it has languished ever since. The bill calls for the state to stop issuing new drilling permits until a full assessment of the environmental, social and economic impacts of shale drilling can be completed.
Capital Soup: Consumer Energy Alliance-Florida Statement on Subcommittee Passage of Hydraulic Fracturing Legislation The Florida House of Representatives’ House Subcommittee on Natural Resources and Agriculture today passed House Bills 71 and 157, sensible hydraulic fracturing legislation sponsored by Rep. Ray Rodrigues (R – Lee County). Upon passage of the legislation, Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) – Florida Executive Director Kevin Doyle issued the following statement: “Consumer Energy Alliance applauds both Representative Ray Rodrigues for sponsoring legislation that would lay the foundation for a transparent process for hydraulic fracturing in the State of Florida and the Florida House Subcommittee on Natural Resources and Agriculture for its passage today. As we continue to shift our energy reliance toward natural gas, Florida’s business community and consumers can be negatively impacted if we do not have the right policies in place to protect the benefits that our current energy situation is providing to our country.”
Consumer Energy Alliance’s The Energy Voice: Penn. State Senators asked to ‘Keep The Heat On This Winter’ It’s January. It’s Cold. No surprise there, but why in the middle of the harsh winter months are Pennsylvania State Senators working to advance legislation to put a moratorium on shale gas development in Pennsylvania? The bill is SB 1100 or the Statewide Natural Gas Drilling Moratorium Act. If made into law, Pennsylvania’s bustling shale gas economy would come to a halt. Who would be affected? In total 2.6 million people
ADN By Lisa Demer. Gov. Sean Parnell (NGP Photo) on Friday announced that he was prepared to abandon the Palin-era natural gas pipeline law and set the state on a new path as an investor and partner in a long-dreamed-about natural gas project from the North Slope. (We'll have more report and photos for our readers on Monday. -dh)
From Governor Parnell's Office. Following the close of the first session of the 28th Alaska Legislature, Governor Sean Parnell (NGP Photo) today thanked legislators and highlighted the successful passage of many of his key priorities to improve Alaska. Reforming Alaska’s oil tax structure, providing cheaper energy to Interior and rural communities, reducing payroll tax increases, exercising fiscal restraint, and protecting Alaskan families led the governor’s agenda this session.