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Northern Gas Pipelines is your public service 1-stop-shop for Alaska and Canadian Arctic energy commentary, news, history, projects and people. It is informal and rich with new information, updated daily. Here is the most timely and complete Arctic gas pipeline and northern energy archive available 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 suggest others existing before 2001.


Mackenzie Unrest Continues - Candidates Debate Gas Pipeline

19 October 2010 7:54am

  • National Post.  A panel that studied the environmental and social impact of a US$16.2-billion Canadian Arctic gas pipeline is rebuking Ottawa's efforts to reject many of its recommendations in a dispute that is delaying the line's regulatory decision. In a lengthy letter to Environment Minister Jim Prentice's office, Robert Hornal, chairman of the Mackenzie gas project's joint review panel, said the 176 recommendations in his panel's key report must be preserved ....

  • AP by Dan Joling.  Alaska gubernatorial candidates answered questions for Anchorage high school students Monday that ranged from Arctic Ocean offshore drilling to their favorite Disney character.  Students gathered at West High for the League of Women Voters Youth Vote gubernatorial debate also heard the candidates' views on gay marriage, the proposed Pebble Mine and a proposed natural gas pipeline.
  • ADN editorial supports Fire Island wind project.  Fire Island, just off the western tip of Anchorage in Cook Inlet, is home to a steady supply of wind, most from the southwest and north. Cook Inlet Region Inc. is clearing land and negotiating with Railbelt utilities with an aim to make electricity from that wind and sell it at competitive prices by 2012.  (See yesterday's Op-ed, below, by CIRI President and CEO Margie Brown.

Compliments to CEA for Successful ENERGY DAY in Washington!

18 October 2010 9:33am

Here is a report on last week's successful ENERGY DAY in the Capitol! 

Parnell Supports Oil Tax Relief - Nebraska Senator Opposes TransCanada Project - American Enviros Attack Oil Sands - CIRI Promotes Wind Project -

18 October 2010 1:18am

Alaska Dispatch, by Patti Epler.  Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell (NGP Photo-R-appearing with Attorney General Dan Sullivan-Sean ParnellL) now says he supports a major revamp of the state's oil tax structure to make Alaska more competitive when it comes to oil industry investment.  The governor had been a staunch supporter of ACES -- Alaska's Clear and Equitable Share -- which was put in place in 2007 by then-Gov. Sarah Palin and a Dan Sullivannearly unanimous Legislature. The tax structure has base rate of 25 percent on the net value of oil and also has a "progressivity" factor that shifts an even bigger percentage to the state when oil prices rise.  Critics, including the North Slope oil producers and some economists, say the tax structure is inhibiting more investment in Alaska at a time when oil production is slowing because it effectively takes away the companies' ability to make large profits as an oil field ages. Supporters, including legislative Democrats, say ACES has generated billions of dollars for the state in the last couple years while oil companies are continuing to make record profits.  In recent weeks at various public forums, Parnell has suggested he would be willing to re-visit ACES, which is a popular theme among numerous candidates for the Legislature this year.  On Friday, Parnell was the featured speaker at the Resource Development Council lunch and used the forum to unveil details on his ideas for trying to boost more oil development in Alaska, which the state depends on for revenue and jobs. ... He also sounded optimistic about the gas pipeline from the North Slope to Canada as well as a line to Valdez for possible exports of LNG. (See more event photos here.  See video and .pdf of Governor Parnell's comments here.)   ...   Houston Chronicle, by Becky Bohrer.  Gov. Sean Parnell said Friday that the state is working to settle a legal dispute over leases that could be critical to the advancement of a major natural gas pipeline in Alaska.  Parnell declined to get into specifics but said he's "increasingly optimistic" that litigation over the North Slope's Point Thomson gas fields can be resolved out of court.  The yearslong dispute stems from the state's yanking of leases that it believes oil and gas companies sat on for too long without developing. ... David Eglinton, a spokesman for Exxon Mobil Corp., the Point Thomson unit operator, confirmed the Irving, Texas-based company is working with the state to resolve "outstanding issues, but more work still needs to be done."

Steve Porter Blog (NGP Photo): The only way it makes sense for the state to build the (gas) pipeline is if Trans-Canada’s openSTEVE PORTER season failed. Denali’s open season would also have to have failed as well. That means that the shippers of the gas believe the project to Valdez and the project through Canada are both uneconomic. Based on this assumption let's look at the state owned and funded all-Alaska project.

Calgary Herald.  Pressure against TransCanada Corp.’s Keystone XL pipeline mounted this week in Nebraska with farmer advocates joining congressional representatives in opposition to the bitumen line.  In a letter released late Thursday Nebraska Margie BrownSenator Mike Johanns asked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to reassess the routing of Keystone XL through his state.

ADN Commentary by Margie Brown (NGP Photo), CIRI President & CEO.  I urge Southcentral Alaskans to support Fire Island wind and other local solutions to the Railbelt's looming energy crisis. And in the meantime, when the mayor asks you to turn down the heat and turn off the lights, you should probably listen. 

First Alaskans by Tim Bradner.  Sean Parnell (NGP Photo) is calm, cautious, steady-as-you-go, and his policies as Alaska's sitting governor are just that, and just like him. ... Parnell's cautious style immediately offered Alaskans sharp contrasts with Palin – it was a relief to many – but Parnell did feel obliged to carry on with several of Palin's controversial resource development policies, like with the natural gas pipeline and oil taxes.

Financial Post, by Vivian Krause.  Like most protests, the one against oil tankers has all the look and feel of a Canadian grassroots movement. The campaign against Alberta’s oil sands also seems to rise out of the people, but the interesting thing is that there are very few roots under that grass. Money comes in from a small core of U.S. charitable groups. One of those groups — the U.S. Tides Foundation of California and its Canadian counterpart have paid millions to at least 36 campaign organizations.

Friday, October 25, 2010 RDC Meeting, Captain Cook Hotel - Event Photos:

Jason Brune



Sean ParnellGovernor Sean Parnell (Center) with 

RDC Staff, L-R: Jason Brune, Deantha Crockett, 

Marleanna Hall, Carl Portman

Paula Easley



Paula Easley and Mary Ann Pease

Sean Parnell

Governor Sean Parnell

And Senate Candidate

Cathy Giessel



Sean ParnellGovernor Sean Parnell and

Attorney General Dan Sullivan


Tom Maloney

Tom Maloney with

Governor Sean Parnell





From Canada....

15 October 2010 6:24am

Sympatica.  The independent panel that reviewed the proposed Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline has blasted the federal and N.W.T. governments for rejecting many of its recommendations.

CBC.  DNA found on a mocking and anonymous April letter might provide the key to identifying a pipeline bomber in northeastern B.C., police say.  There have been six bombings in the Dawson Creek area since October 2008, all aimed at Encana Corp. wellheads or pipelines.

Chevron To Exit Cook Inlet - Dripping Oil Asks, "Will Denali Move Forward?" - Mackenzie Pipeline Dissention Continues

14 October 2010 9:51am

Dan Fauske's (NGP Photo-below) 10-14-10 Presentation to Alliance Re: Status of In-state Gas Pipeline

Dan Fauske

John ZagerADN by Elizabeth Bluemink.  Chevron said the company will offer for sale its interest in several offshore and land-based oil and gas fields, 10 offshore rigs and two gas tank farms. The company also plans to sell its interest in the companies that operate two regional pipelines.  John Zager (NGP Photo), the company's Alaska general manager, said Chevron will continue to focus on safe, reliable operations while it searches for a buyer who will "further develop (the assets') potential." 

Don YoungTacoma News Tribune.  Question of Alaska Congressman Don Young (NGP Photo): "9. What is your position on the federal loan guarantees for an Alaska natural gas pipeline?  • Increase them  • Maintain them as they are  • Decrease them  • Eliminate them  Why? What specifically would you do to carry out your position if elected?

Congress has repeatedly reaffirmed its support for the pipeline project to include loan guarantees. The loan guarantees stand at $18 billion, but there is a Senate proposal I will support in the House to increase this to $30 billion. An Alaskan pipeline will be competing with the Canadian Mackenzie project and inexpensive shale gas in the Lower 48. This, coupled with tighter credit creates significant issues for the project's advancement.  Don Young

Dripping Oil Blog.  A recent article in the Financial Times of London where Conoco's (NYSE:COP)chief executive officer Jim Mulva said the company may have to "reaccess" the Denali pipeline it is proposing to develop with partner BP (NYSE:BP).  The comment was based upon the enormous amount of natural gasreserves in the lower 48 states, which Conoco spokesman John McLemore commented on saying: "Clearly, shale gas (in the Lower 48) has changed the dynamics of natural gas in North America."  ... Mulva did say after his comments to FT that natural gas still remains an "attractive" investment for the company, although it seems he's starting to think longer term than he was in the past.  ... It sounds like in the shorter term things aren't looking nearly as good because of the huge supply for the pipeline, and it'll be interesting to see if that affects the timing of starting the pipeline, if it gets built at all by Conoco and BP.  Another factor is a competing proposal from Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) and TransCanada to built a pipeline serving the same region.

CBC.  The independent panel that reviewed the proposed Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline has blasted the federal and N.W.T. governments for rejecting many of its recommendations on how to make the project successful.  The Joint Review Panel says all of its 176 recommendations must be followed to ensure the proposed 1,200-kilometre pipeline, which would run natural gas through the Northwest Territories to northern Alberta, benefits northerners while having a minimal impact on the environment.     ***     Metro News.  Rob Powell of the World Wildlife Fund praised the panel's insistence on the need to fund environmental monitoring in the area.    ***    Kelowna Now!  The Joint Review Panel says all of its 176 recommendations must be followed to ensure the proposed 1,200-kilometre pipeline, which would run natural gas through the Northwest Territories to northern Alberta, benefits northerners while having a minimal impact on the environment.  Of those 176 recommendations, 115 were aimed at the federal and N.W.T. governments. But in an interim response released earlier this year, the two governments fully accepted only 10 of those recommendations.

Salazar Removes GOM Moratorium: Alaskans Still Out In the Cold - Begich Opposes Energy Tax - Alaska Senate and House Energy Committees Consider Coal-to-Liquids

13 October 2010 5:19am

Today, the State Senate Special Committee on Energy will meet jointly with the House Special Committee on Energy to hear a presentation on Coal-to-Liquids Technology from Tyonek Native Corporation & Accelergy Corporation. When: Wednesday, October 13th at 1:30 p.m.; Where: Anchorage LIO 2nd floor conference room.


Mark BegichAlexandria, VA – The National Taxpayers Union (NTU) praised U.S. Senator Mark Begich’s (NGP Photo) vote against a potentially devastating tax increase on American energy producers and consumers. Begich helped defeat an amendment to the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act that would have raised taxes on domestic energy, thereby saving Alaska’s and the nation’s residents alike from a painful blow to our economy.  Senator Begich opposed a devastating proposal that would have repealed a critical job-creating tax rule – a credit currently available to all companies participating in U.S. manufacturing – solely for our domestic oil and gas sector. Had it passed, the amendment could have meant a $341 billion loss of GDP through 2020 and a 154,000 loss of jobs in 2011 alone. Such a move would have added to the cost of the energy necessary to heat homes, fuel cars, and keep America’s economy running. 
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