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Northern Gas Pipelines, (Alaska Gas Pipeline, Denali - The Alaska Gas Pipeline, Mackenzie Valley Gas Pipeline, Alaska Highway Gas Pipeline, Northern Route Gas Pipeline, Arctic Gas, LNG, GTL) is your public service, objective, unbiased 1-stop-shop for Arctic gas pipeline projects and people, informal and rich with new information, updated 30 times weekly and best Northern Oil & Gas Industry Links on the Internet.  Find AAGPC, AAGSC, ANGTL, ANNGTC,  ANGDA, ANS, APG, APWG, ANGTA, ANGTS, AGPPT, ANWR, ARC, CARC, CAGPL, CAGSL, FPC, FERC, GTL, IAEE, LNG, NEB, NPA, TAGS, TAPS, NARUC, IOGCC, CONSUMER ENERGY ALLIANCE, AOGA,AOGCC, RCA and more...

2009 LINKS: FERC Reports to Congress, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7....; USGS Arctic Gas Estimates; MMS hearings: RDC, Our NGP, AJOC, DH, ADN, KTUU; Enstar Bullet Line: Map and News Links; ANGDA; Alaska Energy Forum; Prosperity Alaska

2008 LINKS: Shell Alaska OCS Study; Mackenzie Gas Project EIS; Join the Alaska Gas Pipeline Blog Discussion; Governor Sarah Palin's AGIA Links; 2007 ACES tax bill links; Department of Revenue 2007 ACES tax documents;  2007 ACES tax Presentations; 2007 ACES tax news; Alaska Gas Pipeline Training and Jobs; Gas Pipeline and Economic Development; Andrew Halcro; Bjřrn Lomborg; FERC's Natural Gas Website Links

WASHINGTON: Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline Act; History of H.R. 4; DOE Energy Bill Position, 6-02; Daschle-Bingaman Energy Bill (Alaska, Sec. 1236 & tax credit, Sec. 2503 & H.R. 4 Conferees), Tax Credit; See amendments, "Energy Policy Act of 2002";  "Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline Act of 2001 (Draft)" & Background Paper, 8-9-01;Alaska Legislature Joint Committee position; Governor's position; Governor's 10-Point Plan; Anadarko Analysis; U.S. Senate Energy Committee Testimony, 10-2-01 - text version;  U.S. Senate Energy Committee Testimony, 9-14-00; Report on the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Act of 1971, prepared by staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 1-18-01

ALASKA: 1-23-03, Governor Frank Murkowski's State of the State Speech; 2002 DRAFT Recommendations to 2003 Legislature; '02 Alaska Legislation; Alaska Highway Natural Gas Pipeline Policy Council; Joint Legislative Gas Pipeline Committee; 9-01 Alaska Models: Canadian Routes, LNG, GTL; HR 4 Story; Cook Inlet Supply-Demand Report: AEDC; Commonwealth North Investigation & Our Article; Report: Backbone; Legislature Contacts; State Gas Pipeline Financing Study; 5-02 Alaska Producer Update; Kenai: "Oil & Gas Industry Issues and Activities Report, 11-02"; Alaska Oil & Gas Tax Structure; 2-27-02 Royalty Sale Background; Alaska Gas Pipeline Office opens, 7-01, and closes, 5-02; Betty Galbraith's 1997-1998 Chronology Our copy.

CANADA: 1-10-03, "Arctic Gas Pipeline Construction Impacts On Northern Transp."-Transport Canada-PROLOG Canada Inc.-The Van Horne Institute;Hill Times Reports, 8-30-02; 9-30-02, Cons. Info. Requirements; CBC Archives, Berger Commission; GNWT Economic Impact Study, 5-13-02; GNWT-Purvin & Gertz Study, 5-8-02; Alberta-Alaska MOU 6-02; Draft Pan- Northern Protocol for Oil and Gas Development; Yukon Government Economic Effects: 4-02 & PPT; Gas Pipeline Cooperation Plan Draft & Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board Mackenzie Valley Pipeline MOU Draft, 6-01; FirstEnergy Analysis: 10-19-01; Integrated Delta Studies; National Post on Mackenzie Pipeline, 1-02;Northern Pipeline Act;  Haida Nation v. British Columbia; Indian Claims Commission; Skeena Cellulose decision -- aboriginal consultations required, 12-02; Misc. Pipeline Studies '02

COMPANIES: Alaska Gas Producers Pipeline Team Newsletter, 7-27-01; APG Newsletter: 5-02, 7-02 & 9-02; ArctiGas NEB PIP Filing Background; NRGPC Newsletter: Fall-02;  4-02 ArctiGas Reduces Field Work; BP's Natural Gas Page; Enbridge Perspective; Foothills Perspective; Williams Perspective; YPC Perspective, 7-02

 MEDIA REFERENCE: Alaska Journal of Commerce; Alaska Inc. Magazine; Anchorage Daily News; Canadian Broadcasting Corporation; Fairbanks Daily News Miner, Juneau Empire; Northern News Services; Oil & Gas Reporter; Petroleum News Alaska; Whitehorse Star, etc.

EXTENDED CONFERENCE NEWS: Alaska Support Industry Alliance, Anchorage Chamber of Commerce Canadian Institute, Insight Information, Inuvik Petroleum Shows, International Association of Energy Economists, Resource Development Council for Alaska, Ziff Energy Group











Northern Gas Pipelines: Please Scroll Down for January News

1-31 (Updates-03:31, 10:15, 13:32, 16:37, 20:35 ET):  If you aren't a subscriber to our free email alerts (above), remember to check in tomorrow for special reports on two significant items: 1.  A State Gas Pipeline Ownership research report retained by the State of Alaska, to be delivered later today, and 2.  News from Toronto and Calgary on Enbridge's emerging Arctic gas pipeline leadership.     *     CBC, Inuvik-Beginning March 1 more than 550 residents will see their natural gas bills shrink by about $50/month.    *     Anchorage Daily News, by Ben Spiess-Republican and Democratic leaders led almost the entire state House of Representatives into a closed meeting Wednesday to discuss the state's fiscal problems.  (See Juneau Empire's     *     "Insight's Aboriginal Oil & Gas Ventures" conference will convene April 25-26 in Edmonton, featuring a program of interest to companies, regulatory agencies, government policy makers and Aboriginal leaders. Two Alaskans will address conferees: Dave Harbour, Publisher of Northern Gas Pipelines and Perry Eaton, Alyeska Pipeline Service Company's Corporate Relations Manager.  Chaired by Jerome N. Slavik, Partner,  Ackroyd, Piasta, Roth & Day LLP, the program includes Patty Meade, Alberta's Deputy Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development; David McGuinty, President & CEO, National Round Table on the Environment and Economy; Terry Williams, Partner with Fraser, Milner, Casgrain, LLP; Larry Veilleux, Community and Corporate Affairs with Golder Associates;  Bill McElhanney, Partner, Ackroyd, Piasta, Roth & Day LLP; A.W. (Sandy) Carpenter, Partner, Lawson, Lundell, Lawson and MacIntosh; Mark Roth, Senior Account Manager, Oil & Gas Banking Centre, Royal Bank of Canada; Shane Parrish, CEO, ADK Corporate Group; Kim Deneron, Secretary Treasurer, ADK Corporate Group; Dennis Nelner, Executive Committee, Liidlii Kue First Nation; Paul McLauchlin,  Environmental Planner, AXYS Environmental Consulting Ltd.  This Insight Information event is coordinated by: Ameera Khoja.   Access Registration Material Here.     *       Valdez Star via Peninsula Clarion-It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that a natural gas pipeline would be an economic boon for the entire state. Everyone agrees, at some point, it would mean jobs for Alaskans and increased revenue for the state.   What they don't agree on is the route which is the one thing everyone should agree on. Bottom line, cheapest route to build is better.     *     CBC, Yellowknife, N.W.T. - The federal government plans to create new jobs in Yellowknife to cope with the growing demands of the region's oil and gas industry.  Judy Tonguay says the expansion will be spread mostly between the department of Indian and Northern Affairs and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, starting with about 20 people. "Once you see a decision taken on a pipeline then you're probably going to see a further ramping up," she says. "Somewhere in the order of 40 to 50 positions."   Twenty years ago Tonguay says the new positions would likely have gone to Ottawa, but things have changed. "There's a greater recognition that decisions should be taken closer to the people (and) that they directly affect, not only the local public, but also the needs of industry," she says. Just as the proposed Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline tapers off, the activity in the Beaufort Sea could emerge placing a whole new set of demands on their staff, she adds.     *      DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 30, 2002--Forest Oil Corporation (NYSE:FST) (Forest) will attend the Credit Suisse First Boston conference in Vail, Colo., to make a scheduled presentation Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2002, at 10:30 a.m. MST (12:30 p.m. EST).  Forest is engaged in the acquisition, exploration, development, production and marketing of natural gas and crude oil in Alaska, Canada and  elsewhere.   Readers may access Forest's presentation by visiting their website at        *       The fourth annual Alaska Forum on the Environment will be held February 4-8, 2002 at the Egan Convention Center in Anchorage.  AFE keynote speakers include an ambassador of cross-cultural communication, a former U.S. Senator and presidential candidate, a wildlife conservationist who trekked 2,000 miles of uninhabited forests of the African Republics of Congo and Gabon, a fisheries administrator, and a Kodiak Native elder.  Contact: Vivian Kinnaird,      

1-30: ANNOUNCEMENTS:  1.  Please join us in welcoming GCI to our family of public service sponsors and for making Northern Gas Pipelines news and archives available to all citizens.  2.  Gordon T. Brinker (Photo), Chief of Surveys, F. Robert Bell and Associates, Anchorage is celebrating the Olympic spirit, taking a treasure from our oil industry memorabilia: an Atlantic Richfield Company official sponsor pin from the 1984 L.A. games for being the 46,000th reader and a bonus: ABC's official 1988 Calgary pin.

Late last night, we received a fax from the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, providing U.S. Senator Frank Murkowski's reaction to President George W. Bush's State of the Union speech in an area of interest to Northern Gas Pipelines.  "The President tonight laid out a course for a more secure America," Murkowski said.  "The President's plan doesn't include being held hostage by foreign oil from places like Iraq.  Tonight he again called Congress to build that energy bridge here at home."      *    FISCAL UNCERTAINTY ?: (Note: 'Fiscal certainty' was an important theme of last Friday's Alliance conference.  Talk of increased industry taxes affects ongoing industry plans for long term investment; resulting uncertainty works to the advantage of competing exploration areas and to the disadvantage of gas pipeline economics.  When elected officials promote increasing the already high industry tax burden, in effect they advocate increasing Alaska's 80%+ dependence on oil & gas revenue and signal planners that long range cost projections for Alaska operations and capital investment must be adjusted for political risk.   For related stories.-dh)  Anchorage Daily News, by Ben Spiess, Juneau -- Executives from Alaska's oil companies called on legislators to solve the state fiscal gap, but not with further taxes on the industry.  "Any changes in taxes might impact profitability and further investments on the North Slope," said Jack Williams, production manager for Exxon Mobil Corp., at a luncheon held by the Alaska Oil and Gas Association at Juneau's Baranof Hotel.   ...  "We're a convenient target," said Kevin Meyers, president of Phillips Alaska. "But we cannot afford an increased burden on the industry."   Last year, Alaska got more than 80 percent of revenue for general spending from oil royalties and taxes. But state oil production has dropped in half in the past 14 years, leaving the state government short of money to cover state services.  With fresh oil from new discoveries and the use of new production technology, Alaska oil flow has been steady at about 1 million barrels a day for the past two years. Tuesday, executives painted a bright future for continued investment on the North Slope, but not if tax rates increase.   "Don't forget, every Alaskan is in the oil and gas business," Meyers said.   ...  Until the state's budget problem is addressed, a cloud of uncertainty hangs over investment in the state, said Steve Marshall, president of BP Alaska.  Gov. Tony Knowles is proposing new taxes to help cover the gap, including a $365 million income tax. ... Knowles ruled out increased oil taxes on the industry. Increasing taxes threatens to "kill the goose that laid the golden egg," he said in a speech Jan. 16.   Rep. Eldon Mulder (Photo-right, 1-25-01 Alliance), the Anchorage Republican who is co-chairman of the House Finance committee, agreed.  "I don't think we can (tax) anymore," he said Tuesday. ... "We've got to compete with the world," he said.  A modest tax increase on the oil industry when coupled with other revenue measures is an option, said Rep. Eric Croft, D-Anchorage.  ...  Another option would be a tax when oil prices rise above certain levels, known as a "windfall" tax, said Jim Sykes, founder of industry watchdog Oil Watch Alaska. Sykes said the tax could begin at $17 per barrel. House Republicans and Democrats plan to meet late this afternoon in private to discuss strategy to address the fiscal gap....      *         Calgary, Alberta - (Nasdaq: TCLPZ) - TC PipeLines, LP (wholly owned by TransCanada PipeLines Ltd., which also owns 50% of Foothills Pipe Lines Ltd. -dh) yesterday announced 2001 net income of US$43.5 million, a 17% increase compared to 2000 net income of US$37.2 million. The Partnership reported 2001 fourth quarter net income of US$11.8 million, compared to net income of US$10.4 million for 2000 fourth quarter.  "This has been another very good year for the Partnership," said Ron Turner, President and CEO of TC PipeLines GP, Inc.   PR  NEWSWIRE, via Alaska Oil & Gas Reporter: "TransCanada finished 2001 in a strong position," said Hal Kvisle, TransCanada's chief executive officer.... In November 2001, TransCanada, its jointly owned affiliate, Foothills Pipe Lines Ltd. and the other active partner in the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System signed an MOU with seven major U.S. companies relating to the Alaska portion of an Alaska Highway pipeline project. All of these companies were involved in developing the Alaska Highway project at an earlier point. "Together, we are developing a proposal and initiating discussions with the Alaska North Slope producers to develop a project that satisfies the needs of both Alaska producers and North American consumers," said Mr. Kvisle.  TransCanada continues to work with Canadian Mackenzie Delta producers to bring Mackenzie Delta natural gas to market through the company's existing Alberta infrastructure. "We remain enthusiastic about the prospects for Mackenzie Delta gas, and we look forward to working with producers and the people of the Northwest Territories to make this attractive Canadian project a reality," said Mr. Kvisle.     *     CBC, CALGARY  - Close on the heels of PanCanadian Petroleum's announcement it was merging with Alberta Energy Company to create EnCana Corporation, Petro-Canada says it's acquiring Veba Oil and Gas in a deal worth $3.2-billion.  *     BP today announced that it has agreed with E.ON to go ahead with its plan to acquire a majority stake in Veba Oil with effect from February 1. The two companies separately said they have agreed in principle to sell Veba's oil and gas production subsidiary to Petro-Canada for $2 billion.         *      CBC, Iqaluit, Nunavut - The lead actor in Atanaarjuaq - the fast runner - is spending couple of weeks in the back yard of France's Prime Minister.  Jacques Chirac wanted an inukshuk sculpture in his back yard after he saw the movie.  ...Nataq Ungaalaq says when he was first approached to make the inukshuk, he thought it was a joke. "It was like a dream,' he says. "I couldn't believe it...."   The Inukshuk was the logo of 1970 era company, Arctic Gas.  (Photo)

1-29:  See our completed reports on the important Alliance meeting, last Friday (Photo, Governor Tony Knowles-"The best social program is a good job.") .  Then visit the conference photo gallery.     *     Peninsula Clarion by Marcus K. Garner-With the discovery of a new natural gas source on the southern peninsula and the prospects for more to come, a new pipeline will link more than just the three companies. It will connect new gas sources with much of Southcentral Alaska.   (Related Daily News story)  *     In another Clarion article, Joel Gay demonstrates how difficult it will be for legislators to balance the budget, with comment from former Governor Jay Hammond.    *     (JUNEAU) - In an unprecedented move prompted by mutual concern for the state's fiscal health, leaders of the Republican-led House Majority have agreed to a joint caucus with Minority representatives this week to discuss ways to address the imbalance between state spending and revenue.  See today's Daily News story.    *       Today: U.S. Senate Energy  Committee  hearing.  Senators heard about the "Impact of The Enron Collapse on Consumers and Energy Markets" Tuesday, 1-29-02, 9:30 a.m., Hart Office Building #216.  U.S. Senator Frank Murkowski, (Photo-right, with Canadian Consul General, Honourable Roger Simmons, 1-25 Alliance meeting) ranking member, said after the meeting: "I look forward to the Senate creating a national energy policy that enhances domestic energy supply, makes that supply more reliable and affordable, and reduces our dependence on foreign oil."      *     AP by Mike Chambers-Juneau -- Two consultants would be added to assist a legislative committee studying an industry proposal to build a natural gas pipeline from the North Slope to the Lower 48 under a plan approved Monday.  (See our earlier, related story)     *    Carol Howes and Paul Vieira, Financial Post, with files from Bloomberg News-Centrica PLC, Britain's largest supplier of natural gas, is buying Enbridge Inc.'s retail energy services business for $1-billion, which will double the number of Centrica's North American customers and extend its reach in Ontario's deregulating energy market.   *  Petroleum News Alaska this week, many gas-related stories.

1-28: Alaska's Senator John Torgerson (Photo, right-RDC, 11-01) last year applied the influence and support of his Joint Natural Gas Pipelines committee to organization of the International Alaska Pipeline Committee.  Minutes of a 1-19-02 meeting are now public and you may obtain them here, in full.  Some of the many 'headlines' include:  Yukon Division of Oil and Gas' Greg Komaromi:  "Foothills is getting ready to file something with the NEB that will spell out how they propose to update the project (community liaison plan)"    *    Minister Scott Kent (Photo, left-11-29-01) says, "Foothills will have to force the issue to get the feds to respond!!"   *   "Torgerson reports he's asked Andrew Lundquist to have the White House take a lead on routing issues; says 'pressure has been put on the Secretary of Energy,' to reinstate the Federal Inspector position."  *  Torgerson says that if the Alaska LNG gas pipeline initiative passes, "...people could say that this means Alaskans do not want a gas line down the highway.   *   "We, Alaska, support the Mackenzie Delta route as a stand alone, but we will never go over the top. We will put the gas back in the ground before we send our gas over the top."  (Several readers have asked Northern Gas Pipelines to supply the legal basis for the latter statement--also made by other elected leaders--as the State owns just 1/8 of the gas produced and lease documents do not stipulate a routing or prohibit a routing for that 1/8 or the remaining 7/8; we shall continue looking.  We are sure documented authority or lease terms of which we are unaware exists, since contract violations could otherwise invite fairly embarrassing if not serious legal/financial implications for a state already operating with an approximate $1 billion/year deficit.  -dh)

1-26/27 (Weekend):   Alliance conference Friday at the Sheraton; our detailed report of Canadian and U.S. presentations to follow this weekend.  Meanwhile, review Tony Hopfinger's excellent, Anchorage Daily News pieces: Phillips Alaska Inc. wants Congress to streamline federal permitting and protect the company from low prices before it will move ahead with a North Slope natural gas pipeline to the Lower 48.  One of the conference's 'breaking news' items was Phillips' Vice President of Government Relations, Don Duncan (Photo-right), describing a price floor for Alaska North Slope gas prices, structured through tax credits, assuring producers a minimum price of $1.25 per thousand cubic feet at the wellhead.  -dh   &   BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. is sitting on 7 billion barrels of North Slope oil and gas and wants to recover as much as it can over the coming decades, president Steve Marshall said Friday.   See Tim Bradner's related, Anchorage Daily News Story.   *      Peninsula Clarion-The cry for a long-range fiscal plan is getting louder. From many corners of the state, private citizens, independent economists, civic organizations and business groups alike -- of all political stripes -- are weighing in on the need for legislators to address the budget gap this session. ... "The gravity of the situation is enormous," said Rep. Andrew Halcro....   See our related stories here, and linkage to gas pipeline issues.     *       CALGARY, Alberta (January 25, 2002) - At the request of The Toronto Stock Exchange, Alberta Energy Company Ltd. (AEC) advises that it is in discussions with PanCanadian Energy Corporation regarding a potential merger of equals....  AEC has become an important new participant in Alaska North Slope (ANS) exploration and is expected to participate in the ANS Royalty Gas Sale RFP process now underway.  Possible merger result: largest independent gas producer in North America. -dh

1-25:  See this outstanding piece on ANWR: ALASKA: MORE THAN JUST A PRETTY FACE? by Paula Easley (Photo-right, 4-01: Don't you love our dual message?)    *       Anchorage Daily News Opinion Column by Mike O'Connor- ... A long-term fiscal plan based on a philosophy of equity and fair return is key to diversifying our economy. That would require broad-based, fair revenue sources that require all Alaskans to share in the solution. ... A new revenue forecast says Alaska will end this fiscal year $900 million in the red. Next year is even worse, with a projected deficit of $1.13 billion. That means Alaska will empty its budget reserve account by 2004. Alaska will be without a reserve account for the first time in years, and the additional money will not be easy to raise from further cutbacks in government or additional taxation. ... We have a narrow window to resolve the fiscal problem we face so we can attract the new capital we need to grow our economy. It's a mission that demands our complete attention. That's why we need to eliminate as many distractions or self-serving, special issues as possible. That includes all those small tax increases, such as alcohol or gasoline tax increases, that are so divisive and take up so much time. That way we can focus our efforts on the long-term solution. A solution that doesn't try to balance the budget on the back of one or a handful of industries. A solution that grows -- not shrinks -- our economy.   (O'Connor is president of Peak Oilfield Service Co. and served on the 1995 Long Range Financial Planning Commission and on the Governor's Alaska Highway Natural Gas Pipeline Policy Council.  His view supports the editorial position of Northern Gas Pipelines that northern governments' best incentive for attracting oil & gas investment is creation of stable fiscal and regulatory regimes.  In fact, 'stability' is ONE OF THE FEW positive contributions local governments can offer the free market, to encourage long term economic prosperity.  -dh)        *     CALGARY, Alberta – January 23, 2002 –  (TSE:TRP) (NYSE:TRP) - TransCanada PipeLines Limited, an owner of Foothills Pipe Lines, Ltd.,  will release its year-end 2001 financial results in the morning of Tuesday, January 29, 2002.  Analysts, members of the media and other interested parties are invited to participate in a teleconference and audio web cast January 29, 2002 at 1:00 p.m. (Mountain) / 3:00 p.m. (Eastern) to discuss the 2001 financial results, general developments and issues concerning the company.  more....     *     Financial Post by Carol Howes, CALGARY - As a 24-year-old Sahtu leader, Stephen Kakfwi (Photo-left) once remarked that if ever a natural gas pipeline was built through his ancestral lands it would be "on our own terms."  Twenty-five years later, Mr. Kakfwi, now Premier of the Northwest Territories, has an even grander vision: Not only to have a pipeline constructed along the Mackenzie Valley from the Beaufort Sea to Alberta, but to have some of the largest energy companies in the world with operations in Alaska link up and use the system to tap into Arctic gas....Whether Mr. Kakfwi can seize those opportunities depends on many factors, not the least of which is resolving a dizzying array of conflicting interests among energy producers, politicians, aboriginals and environmental groups that in recent months have all staked out their positions over one of the largest single pipelines to be built in North America.  "Two and half years ago you couldn't get anybody to talk about the North. Then all of a sudden the window broke," said Wayne Sartore (Photo-late '01 in Anchorage), vice-president of northern pipeline development for Enbridge Inc., a Calgary-based company that owns an oil pipeline in Norman Wells, N.W.T.  ... The majority of Canadian natural gas producers have rallied to get a piece of the action. Many of the major U.S. players see the Arctic as the next frontier. Every pipeline company in Western Canada has drawn up route proposals, put their lobbyists to work and hired environmental consultants. Federal, provincial and state governments in Canada and the United States are plotting strategy.  "This whole thing is a political machine," said William Lacey, a pipeline analyst with FirstEnergy Capital Corp. "There's a lot of people to try and keep happy."  To date, there are four pipeline proposals on the table:

- In the Mackenzie Delta, four gas producers led by Imperial Oil Ltd. said this month they will proceed with plans to build a pipeline to move gas from Inuvik ....  Groups representing about 75% of aboriginals in the Northwest Territories have signed an agreement ....

- Foothills Pipe Lines Ltd., owned jointly by Calgary-based TransCanada PipeLines Ltd. and Vancouver-based Westcoast Energy Inc., has dusted off its proposal first examined in the 1970s and known as the Alaska Natural Gas Transportation System. It is a southern route ....  Earlier this month, Foothills and its partners submitted its proposal to gas producers in Alaska....

- Last week, a group including Harvie Andre (Photo) a former federal Cabinet minister and Texan investment bankers, said it would proceed with its proposal for a US$7.8-billion pipeline that would combine and transport up to 5.2 billion cubic feet of gas a day from both Alaska and the Mackenzie Delta along one route ....

- Gas producers in Alaska are in the final stages of a $100-million feasibility study to examine construction of their own southern Alaska Highway route, or a northern over-the-top route, and are expected to announce a decision within the next few months. Their preliminary estimates call for a US$17-billion Alaska Highway pipeline or a US$15-billion over-the-top route. To date, neither route appears to be economic. They have also put forward a number of conditions to be met by Alaska in order to proceed, such as enabling legislation to hasten the regulatory process.

Enbridge, while it has not put forward any formal proposals, has also been working behind the scenes ....  "I think confusion lies in who is doing what. But at the end of the day everybody understands what they're trying to do," said Mr. Lacey.  The stakes involved in a northern pipeline are huge. Alaska's North Slope holds an estimated 35 trillion cubic feet of known reserves, while the Mackenzie Delta holds about nine trillion cubic feet. The exploration potential is even larger, with an estimated 65 trillion cubic feet waiting to be discovered in Alaska and a similar volume ....  According to submissions to the U.S. Senate committee on energy and natural resources last fall, the cumulative economic impact in Alaska in developing its reserves is estimated at 160,000 jobs, with a boost of US$300-million to the U.S. gross domestic product.  ...  While Alaska legislators oppose a subsea pipeline, Mr. Kakfwi said he believes the momentum is shifting. The over-the-top option is shorter and in the long run would provide a better return to Alaska's government, he said. "At some point or another those will become rather compelling considerations."  Regardless of which route and which proposal is chosen -- and the ultimate decision lies with oil and gas producers -- a northern pipeline faces one of the most extensive and complex regulatory exercises ever to unfold in Canada and the United States even before a final decision is made to construct. ...  There is also potential for lengthy litigation. While Foothills and its partners are authorized to build the pipeline in Alaska, their decades-old authority is likely to be challenged in court by other pipeline companies. An over-the-top route faces staunch opposition from ....  "Clearly, [producers] would like to [go over the top] for one simple reason: It's shorter. But other factors come in to play," said Bob King, a spokesman for Tony Knowles, Governor of Alaska. "Ultimately, the economic feasibility is going to drive whatever choice is made. It has to meet the test of the marketplace, which will decide."  While some of the enthusiasm for a northern pipeline has slipped because of the decline in natural gas prices -- down 70% from last year's levels -- most industry observers agree it is not a matter of "if" a northern gas pipeline is built, but "when."  ... By 2015, demand for natural gas is projected to soar to 31.3 trillion cubic feet a year in North America from the current 24 trillion cubic feet as production .... The mammoth gas reserves of the Canadian and U.S. Arctic constitute the only major proven new supply of natural gas for North America.  "Obviously, with the economy turning a little bit sour, is it going to slow it down?" asked Mr. Sartore. "Yes. Is it going to slow it down significantly? I just think it's a matter of a year or two in delay. It's going to come and certainly in all of our lives -- and, hopefully, all of our careers."

1-24:  REGISTER: ALLIANCE CONFERENCE TOMORROW!     *     Today, Alaska is publishing notice of a "Second Notice of Clarification Regarding the State of Alaska Solicitation for Offers to Purchase Alaska North Slope Gas dated December 26, 2001."  Questions may be directed to: Kevin Banks, Petroleum Market Analyst, Division of Oil and Gas, Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Phone: (907) 269-8781; Fax: (907) 269-8938.  Northern Gas Pipelines has a copy of the notice and we will Email the document to readers on request. -dh     *      Reader Guenter Bouman of B.C. kindly alerts us: NewsCanada.Com, CALGARY (CP) - The need to quickly build a northern pipeline connecting Arctic energy reserves to southern markets has plunged along with natural gas prices, federal Environment Minister David Anderson said Wednesday.   "Any such pressure has died down, and if you want to know, just look at the financial pages and the price of energy," Anderson said during a visit to Alberta and meetings with oilpatch executives.  ...  Still, interest remains in bringing vast gas supplies in Alaska and the Northwest Territories to southern markets.   Pierre Alvarez, president of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, said one need only look to industry announcements already made this year.  A producers group studying the feasibility of a $4-billion pipeline running down the Mackenzie Valley announced this month that it would begin preparing applications for regulators.  ... And last week, ArctiGas Resources Corp. filed preliminary plans for a pipeline that would access both Canadian and Alaskan gas with a pipeline under the Beaufort Sea.  Anderson also said any companies wanting to build a pipeline had better have their environmental studies done carefully.   "The only word I have is: 'Do your homework,' because we're going to be thorough in our analysis and when we find things that haven't been done - if we do - obviously there'll be further delays."   With a high-pressure gas line possibly running over mountains, under oceans and rivers and over sensitive lands, "it's not something you can do with skimpy analyses; you've got to do good work," said Anderson. ..."Both of those dates loom as points in the time frame which we should be aware of."  ... The oilpatch gets a chance to voice its concerns to new federal Natural Resources Minister Herb Dhaliwal as he visits Calgary on Thursday (today).    *     Juneau-the House yesterday voted to appropriate $1.1 million that would be used to encourage the U.S. Senate to allow oil exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).     *     Scott Heyworth (Photo-right, Egan Center, 5-24-01), an LNG/gas pipeline project activist, yesterday filed a letter of intent with the Alaska Public Offices Commission to run for the office of Lieutenant Governor in the upcoming November election.

1-23:    ALL OF OUR WASHINGTON D.C. READERS/JOURNALIST FRIENDS, ALERT (Notice: We just received a fax saying the conference may be postponed.  Suggest interested readers call Senate media contact: Julie Teer, 202-224-5316): Tomorrow (Thursday) The Senate Energy Task Force will be joined by a powerful coalition in a press conference, 11 a.m., S-207, Mansfield Room in the Capital, including: Senators, Jerry Hood (Photo-7/31 Capital press conference), Teamsters; Karen Kerrigan, Small Business Survival Committee; Robert Deposada, Latino Coalition; Jerry Yates, Vietnam Veterans Institute; Charlie Jarvis, United Seniors Association; Jim Martin, 60 Plus; Harry Alford, African American Chamber of Commerce; Robin Read, National Foundation for Women Legislators.  We suspect the subject will include ANWR and other Northern energy issues.  -dh      *     Two opinions in the 1-22 Post would floor any knowledgeable Alaskan reader.   First, Washington Post-John Podesta, President Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff urges opposition to ANWR in the belief that U.S. national energy policy should call for conservation of energy and a retreat from fossil fuels.  Northern Gas Pipelines readers know that ANWR is adjacent to the North Slope oil & gas reserves from whence will come a gas pipeline, hopefully, which is why we follow ANWR issues.  Our more sophisticated readership knows that with less than 1 % of America's energy currently coming from alternate sources, Podesta' s piping can only lead any followers into a darker century of depression and unemployment.  His ignorance of Northern oil & gas expertise is an attack on civilization, education and responsible government regulation in the North.  His name-calling the desire for energy security, as appeasement of a 'special interest', is intellectually dishonest; energy security is a 'public interest' issue.  Second, Letters-to-the-Editor writer, Ross Hammersley urges opposition to ANWR energy work based on his fears local polar bears would be threatened.  While these two letters and others in publications nationwide have the look, feel and smell of an anti-ANWR campaign, this independent writer calmly asks fellow citizens to dial 1-907-555-1212 and ask for anyone in the village of Kaktovik.  What a great experience it would be to actually talk with someone who lives in the area (Request their new ANWR video for a true story.)!  The fact that the House energy bill calls for development from a 2,000 acre area in a Refuge the size of a Carolina, on its face, should cause even the most aggressive bear defenders among us to yawn and switch the channel or toss the paper.  And why do the extremist groups contribute to the confusion over energy policy by airing TV ads, deceitfully depicting the flat tundra of ANWR's coastal plain as an alpine, springtime mountain?  Why, indeed.  Beware the deception in motion.  -dh  ("I have to thank you for getting me in contact with the community of Kaktovik.  I received a prompt reply from Karl Francis (Photo-right), and have ordered their video.  I encourage others to do the same, and hear from the people of the north, rather than southern "gortex" groups, and hear the truth from those who live there.  In the end, the decision on development should be the responsibility of the people and elders of the northern communities, who not only have to live there daily, but raise future generations and justify to their posterity why their decisions were sound.  If more people had this level of accountability and forward thinking, there would be a lot less selfishness and more willingness to "walk a mile in their shoes" before judging.  Thank you for the great referral!"  Barry Hochstein (Photo, below-right) Director, Aboriginal Relations-Inuvialuit Environmental & Geotechnical Inc. (Note: 1-23-02 Email from Northern Gas Pipelines reader)     *     Juneau, AP via ADN by Cathy Brown -- A House panel on Tuesday approved spending $1.1 million more this year to push opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, despite hearing opposition from environmentalists.     *     GREAT FALLS, Mont., O&G Journal (AP) - A proposal to drill eight natural gas wells on land within and adjacent to the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument would not harm the environment or wildlife, a federal agency determined.   *     Anchorage Daily News by Tony Hopfinger (Photo, 1-15-02) - Unocal Corp. on Tuesday announced the discovery of a new onshore natural gas reservoir on the Kenai Peninsula after an exploration well produced up to 11.2 million cubic feet of gas per day. drilled the well with Marathon Oil Co. last year in the Ninilchik Exploration Unit.  The well, located 35 miles south of Kenai, found significant natural gas accumulations. ... We knew there was gas there but we had been concentrating on oil," said Roxanne Sinz of Unocal. "Now that circumstances are calling for more gas, we're taking another look at these areas."  Last year, a report commissioned by the Anchorage Economic Development Corp. found Southcentral Alaska will face natural gas shortages by the middle of the decade unless new reserves are discovered, although some experts are more optimistic.  Some gas producers stepped up exploration last year, citing a couple of potential reservoirs that could help heat and power cities across the region for decades.   Among those that made announcements was Escopeta Oil and Gas of Houston. Last September, it said it would drill a subsurface structure that it estimated could hold as much as 12 trillion cubic feet of natural gas near the East Forelands area of Cook Inlet. ... Unocal and Marathon had formed a company for a proposed gas pipeline that would connect this new production area to the Southcentral pipeline system. The 75-mile-long line would run from Kalifonsky to Anchor Point, Sinz said.   "If we find more gas down there, that will determine whether this gas line is built," she said.     *    News on upcoming Canadian - U.S. Arctic gas conferences coming soon!  Northern Gas Pipelines is honored to be participating.     .

1-22: M E E T I N G S: For Friday's Alliance agenda at the Sheraton Anchorage Hotel, click logo (right).  Then program your PDAs using "Upcoming Events", right column noting:  2-19/20-02,Pac Com Expo Oil, Gas & Mining Show & Conference, Anchorage; 3-4/5-02, North American Natural Gas Conference and Calgary GasExpo 2002, Telus Convention Centre, Calgary; 3-5/9-02,  Alaska Miners Association Conference, Fairbanks; 3-7/8-02,  Arctic Gas Symposium, Canadian Institute, Calgary-see more here; 4-25/26-02 - Insight's "Aboriginal Communities: Oil and Gas Ventures", Edmonton.  Watch for details; 4-29/30-02, Insight's "Arctic Gas Opportunities in the North", Houston.  Watch for details; 6-21/22-02, Second Inuvik Petroleum Show; 6-11/13-02, Canadian International Petroleum Conference, Calgary.....and more.  If you don't use a PDA, never fear; the reminders will be there.    *      President George Bush speaking in W. Va. (1:30 ET) said, "An energy bill ought to allow for natural gas and crude oil development in Alaska.  It's in the best interest of the people trying to find work and in the best interest of the United States."   Thundering applause greeted the statement.  Those opposing ANWR development should not underestimate the rising resolve of U.S. citizens to reduce dependence on foreign energy sources in the wake of 9-11.  -dh      *      Alaska Rep. Ken Lancaster writes to tell us the House is scheduled to take up a special pro-ANWR appropriation bill this morning in Juneau.     *     Senator John Kerry is scheduled to deliver a speech on energy to the Center for National Policy today. Kerry will criticize the Bush administration's push to open a portion of Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to exploration and production.  -From Jay Rickerts of Williams Energy News Live.   Also, See Washington Post article by Dana Millback.    *     Northern News Services, by Thorunn Howatt, Yellowknife - A pipeline could be built before spring after Paramount Resources received the permitting needed to build a pipeline and gathering system in the Deh Cho region's Cameron Hills. ... "We still require several other regulatory approvals," said Paramount's Shirley Maaskant.  "We also require approval from the National Energy Board for our trans-boundary pipeline and we also require approval from the National Energy Board on our gathering system...."      *     National Post by Claudia Cattaneo-CALGARY - Another two of Canada's largest oil and gas producers said yesterday they're reducing capital spending because energy prices are lower.      *     DESCO International has joined the web sites linking to Northern Gas Pipelines and we are honored. -dh

1-21: Juneau: FAST TRACK BILL INCLUDES HELP FOR FISHERIES, TOURISM & ANWR Support in Governor Tony Knowles' $21 M Supplemental Request.  Knowles bill includes a $1 million grant to Arctic Power to continue its national efforts in gaining support for oil and gas exploration and development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge ANWR.        *      Inuvik, N.W.T. - Nellie Cournoyea (Also, chair of the Mackenzie Valley Aboriginal Pipeline Corporation {MVAPC}) swept to victory in her re-election bid as chair of the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation board.      *       CBC, Yellowknife, N.W.T. - More land in the Northwest Territories is being opened for oil and gas exploration. Indian Affairs is inviting companies to submit bids for three new parcels in the central Mackenzie and Beaufort Delta by mid-May.       *      Juneau-See our report on last week's meeting of the Alaska Legislature's Joint Natural Gas Pipelines Committee, with links to other news reports provided to you earlier.     *     Below: please review our weekend report for news...and information about the winner of our contest!

1-19/20 weekend:  AP, Via Fairbanks News-Miner, by Cathy Brown, JUNEAU--A bill to give a nonprofit group $1 million more to continue lobbying for the opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is positioned to zoom through the Legislature.       *    Economists say Alaska is facing a recession: Hear from Neil Fried, Scott Goldsmith, David Reaume, George Rogers.     *       Anchorage Daily News Commentary, by Steve Lindbeck-This was at least the third time the governor used his State of the State message to propose a long-term budget fix. It was also the most serious, because the day of reckoning is now more clearly at hand: In two years, without a change, we'll have stripped our reserves and will be facing a billion-dollar budget hole.       *      AP via Anchorage Daily News, Fairbanks -- The major North Slope gas producers have scrapped an idea to auction shipping capacity this year in the proposed pipeline to the Lower 48.      *     Please see Ken Thompson's opinion on pipeline routing added here; other reader opinions will be accepted.     WASHINGTON -- (Reuters) -- President George Bush enlisted labor leaders (last week) to press Democratic allies in the Senate to approve oil drilling in an Alaskan wildlife refuge, saying his energy plan would create jobs. Proving that politics sometimes does make strange bedfellows, the Republican president received a warm welcome at the Capitol Hill headquarters of the 1.4 million-strong Teamsters Union, which supports his proposal to open part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to exploration. By Patricia Wilson (       *     We found the 43,000th, prizewinning reader at 7:29 p.m., AT last night: another after hours, work ethic reader!  "The Color of Oil", Donated and autographed by author Ron Oligney on 1-15-02 at an IAEE presentation in Anchorage--especially for us--is being mailed to our industry professional in Calgary:  He writes, "I have heard much about your site over the past few weeks.  I often visit your site to get the latest update to northern pipeline issues.  I find it to be a great source for current information and discussion from a number of perspectives.  ...  I believe I am the 43,000 visitor to your site."  Tod Collard, Senior Environmental Specialist, Alaska Gas Producers Pipeline Team.  (Our prize winners hail from all over: Washington D.C., Alberta, British Columbia and Anchorage...very representative of our overall readership.  -dh)

1-18:  Resource Development Council for Alaska speaker, Arctic Slope Regional Corporation (Photo-ASRC logo) Chairman, Jacob Adams. Anchorage Daily News, by Paula Dobbyn -  For 2001, the second year in a row, Arctic Slope Regional Corp. expects to top $1 billion in annual revenue. The Barrow-based Native regional corporation is the first homegrown Alaska business to achieve such lofty sales. "Alaskans can be very proud," said Tadd Owens, executive director of the Resource Development Council. "They're proving that Alaska Native businesses can be successful on a lot of fronts, providing for their shareholders and getting big returns on their investments.      *      Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, by Sean Cockerham, Juneau Bureau--A Houston-based company has applied to Canadian authorities for approval of its proposal to ship North Slope natural gas to market by a route that would bypass Interior Alaska.  (Please see our report here, complete with data to download.)     *     CBC, Whitehorse, Yukon - Legislators in Alaska aren't impressed with the pipeline company that filed its application yesterday to build an 'over the top' pipeline from Alaska to Alberta.   ...   Arctic Resources Company told federal regulators in Canada yesterday that it plans to build a pipeline from Prudhoe Bay to Alberta through the Mackenzie Valley.   But the chair of Alaska's Natural Gas Pipeline Committee, John Torgerson (Photo-RDC, 11-01), says U.S. federal and state laws bar the 'over-the-top' route.   "We believe that the Natural Gas Transportation Act which was passed by Congress and ratified by treaties and a lot of other things is the law that is prevailing," he says. "The producers are trying to circumvent that so they can actually file over the top of what has already been filed by the consortium of pipeline companies."  Meanwhile, a committee of gas producers is preparing to close its office. It was set up to determine whether a natural gas pipeline is economically viable....     *     Peninsula Clarion, ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An energy consultant who grew up in Alaska believes the least risky way to tap the North Slope's huge natural gas reserves is to do so in stages, running multiple pipelines across the Canadian Arctic during the next 16 years.  (Please see our report here, complete with study to download.)     *     Oil Daily -  After a year in office, President George Bush is riding high in popularity polls for his successful handling of the war on terrorism and key domestic issues. But he has stumbled over energy policy -- galling for a president who calls the state of Texas home. Major proposals of his energy plan, including drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), remain gridlocked in the Senate. The president is now on a mission to change that.     *     Juneau-"When you're in a hole, the first thing you do is stop digging," said Sen. President Rick Halford (Photo, 12-14). "It simply doesn't make sense for ... a state facing a potential $1.2 billion budget deficit to dramatically increase state spending."  See Governor Tony Knowles' proposal below.  See our earlier reports here.     *     Northern News Services by Derek Neary, Fort Simpson - The Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND) has committed himself to periodically meeting with DCFN leaders other than at the negotiations table.  DCFN Grand Chief Michael Nadli said Robert Nault made the promise during a closed-door meeting with DCFN leadership last Friday morning in Fort Simpson. The first such tete-a-tete has been scheduled for mid-February in Ottawa.       *     Whitehorse Star, by Chuck Tobin-A $430,000-fund to finance phase one of researching how Yukon first nations will participate in the oil and gas industry throughout the North was announced this morning.  The federal government has committed $379,000 while the Yukon government is putting in $38,000. A further $12,000 will be contributed by the Council of Yukon First Nations.
CYFN Grand Chief Ed Schultz said the council has been working on the Oil and Gas Preparedness Plan since last June.

1-17: This has been a big week in the lives of Northern Gas Pipelines, with many currently active project advocates raising their voices:

  • See our report on ArctiGas' Calgary press conference, Forrest Hoglund, Chairman.
  • See our report on Tuesday's presentation by Professor Ron Oligney.
  • See our report on Wednesday's meeting of Senator John Torgerson's Joint Committee on Natural Gas Pipelines (scheduled for weekend completion...).
  • See daily reports below.

BARTLESVILLE, Okla., Jan. 17, 2002 --- Phillips Petroleum Company today said that it has received from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) a request for additional information and documentary material regarding its
proposed merger with Conoco Inc. [NYSE:COC].  The company is continuing to work closely with the FTC staff.     *     Juneau - Saying the State of the State is strong, Gov. Tony Knowles (Photo-10-31-01) charged the Alaska Legislature with  taking three key actions to continue the growth of the state, including adoption of a sustainable, balanced budget. (See related reports here.)  In the following two years, Knowles noted there are sufficient tools available to future Legislatures to fill the remaining gap before the reserves are totally exhausted. This includes a revision in the oil tax, although noting that private  investment depends on fiscal stability and global  competitiveness, Knowles said. "Tax rates should be changed only if they meet those criteria or we'll  kill the goose that has laid the golden egg."  (See Ben Spiess' thorough Anchorage Daily News Article.)     *    
Special Report from Northern Gas Pipelines reader, Wes Witton - U.S. Senator Frank Murkowski (Photo, 11-3-01) addressed a special meeting of Commonwealth North Tuesday.  His message focused on Congressional issues important to Alaska: primarily energy matters involving ANWR and gas pipeline.  Murkowski seemed optimistic of an growing reality in the Congress about the importance of energy.  An Energy Bill will emerge from the Senate this term and more Senators than ever understand the significance of ANWR.  Murkowski will organize Washington meetings in early February with state and industry representatives to reach a common understanding of the path to follow in building a gas pipeline.     *      CBC, CALGARY - Another group is moving forward with plans to get natural gas in the Arctic to markets in the south. 

1-16: Today, from 12-1 p.m. AST the Alaska Legislature's Joint Committee on Natural Gas Pipelines will meet in Juneau and hear "Pipeline Updates" from: Chairman John Torgerson, re:  Alaska Highway Pipeline Committee,  Federal Legislation, Legislative Council Requests (FERC Attorney & Tax Attorney) and Introduction of Contract Economist- Dr. Doug Reynolds; Department of Revenue Update by Commissioner Wilson Condon (Pipeline ownership); Department of Natural Resources Update from Commissioner Pat Pourchot, re: Royalty Gas Sale, Netricity, Joint Pipeline Office, Studies Being Conducted; Foothills Pipe Lines Ltd. Update by John Ellwood; Alaska Gas Producer’s Pipeline Team Update by Dave MacDowell; Phillips Alaska Inc. Update by Michael HurleyNorthern Gas Pipelines will have a report for readers.     *     JUNEAU ‑ The Joint Committee on Natural Gas Pipelines has contracted with a Fairbanks-based economic research firm to provide professional economic services to the Legislature as it continues working to bring Alaska’s North Slope natural gas reserves to market.  See story here.     *          The first meeting of 2002 for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission takes place today.     *     See this Fairbanks Daily News-Miner report on Gubernatorial candidates Fran Ulmer and Frank Murkowski reacting to Alaska oil and gas issues, among others.     *     Our reports on yesterday's presentation by Professor Ron Oligney (Photo-right) in Anchorage and today's ArctiGas news conference are coming.  Meanwhile, refer to this piece by Tony Hopfinger (Photo, left, interviewing Oligney),  Anchorage Daily News -  An energy consultant who grew up in Alaska believes the least risky way to tap the North Slope's huge natural gas reserves is to do so in stages, running multiple pipelines across the Canadian Arctic during the next 16 years. Ron Oligney, director of engineering research development at the University of Houston, said Tuesday that smaller pipelines built every few years would reduce the huge costs and risks that would come with a single, larger pipeline to the Lower 48.     *     CBC story on ArctiGas, Yellowknife, N.W.T. - Arctic Resources Company is expected to announce today that it will file an application to build a pipeline down the Mackenzie Valley. The Houston-based company has scheduled a news conference for this morning in Calgary.  See the ArctiGas website, first opened today.      *       See our Anchorage Daily News Op-Ed piece in today's paper.    

1-15:  ANOTHER BIG GAS PIPELINE NEWS DAY.................Calgary, AB - Tomorrow, ArctiGas Resources Corporation, on behalf of the Northern Route Gas Pipeline Corporation, plans to file a Preliminary Information Package (PIP) with the National Energy Board for the Northern Route Gas Pipeline Project.  A news conference has been scheduled for January 16th at 11:30 am MST in the Royal Room of the Metropolitan Centre, 333 – 4th Avenue SW.  The PIP will deal with the Canadian section of a pipeline from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska to the Mackenzie Delta and then via the Mackenzie River valley into Alberta, the so called “over-the-top” route.  Speaking at this news conference will be Forrest Hoglund (Photo-Houston, 11-01), Chairman of Arctic Resources Corporation, Dr. Harvie Andre, Chairman of ArctiGas, the Canadian affiliate of Arctic Resources and Mr. Larry Tourangeau, President of Northern Route Gas Pipeline Corporation.  Arrangements will be made for a telephone hook-up of the conference in both Canada and the United States by contacting Stephen Carter (403.265-1068 or 403.630-7133-cell) for those who are unable to attend the news conference in person.  A media information kit describing the project will be available in the Royal Room of the Metropolitan Centre and at the offices of Arctic Resources Company of Houston, Texas.  Executives of Arctic Resources will be present in the Corporate Conference Room located at Three Riverway, Suite 1375, Houston, Texas  77056.       *     Williams Energy reports the Center for Strategic and International Studies is holding a daylong conference in Washington today to address U.S./Canadian energy issues. Washington Bureau Chief Peter Cook says a hot topic up for discussion is the proposed gas pipeline linking Alaska to the Lower 48. British Petroleum's President of Alaska-Canada Gas David Welch will be a participant at the conference. The Washington bureau will have highlights from the event, here: ....     *     Here's a busy Alaska meeting schedule Round Oak Publishing of Katy, Texas arranged for their co-author of "The Color of Oil" this week.  Author, Ron Oligney, is also co-author of "The Imperatives of Arctic Natural Gas Development," and will address IAEE today.  (Meetings: 1-14, National Public Radio in Anchorage; 1-15, Department of Natural Resources executives and IAEE; 1-16, Northern Gas Pipelines, energy companies; 1-17, State administration officials and legislators in Juneau.)     *     Peninsula Clarion, by Sen. John Torgerson (Chairman of the Legislature's Joint Committee on Gas Pipelines, "Legislature" Button, left column) - ... My staff this session includes the "veterans" many of you know: Mary Jackson, my lead staff person from the central Kenai Peninsula; Nancy Kosch, my scheduler and receptionist from Homer, and Darwin Peterson, my Resource Committee staff person from Cooper Landing.  My new staff member is Kurt Olson, longtime resident of the peninsula and most recently a member of the Soldotna City Council. Kurt will be working with several of the committees where I serve as a member, including my budget subcommittees. ... I also have an intern this year, Kim Ognisty, who will be working with me on various resource issues. She's a student at the University of Alaska and has an interest in resource matters.   I have two immediate concerns on the table -- annexation by the city of Homer and the natural gas pipeline. ... As you know, I have been directly involved with the natural gas pipeline project. As chair of the Joint Natural Gas Pipeline Committee, I have spent much of the past year working toward that development, protecting Alaska's interests.  A primary concern has been that we have not had adequate information for projecting costs and revenues of the pipeline. Through the Legislative Council, we have contracted with a research team that will be working with me during the session to provide real numbers of this project to assure an unbiased basis for legislative decisions. I expect to be quite busy working with this team on the development of these numbers. Contact number: 1-800-964-5733.       *    Peninsula Clarion , by Hal Spence-It will take an amendment to the Alaska Constitution to compel a spending limit on state government, Sen. Jerry Ward, R-Anchorage (Photo), said Monday of last week.  That's why he's pinning his hopes on SJR 23, which would cap spending at 2000's level, a bill he's co-sponsored with Sen. Dave Donley, R-Anchorage.  (See our budget/pipeline economics related stories.)     *      Whitehorse Star, by CHUCK TOBIN-Hundreds gathered Sunday for the official signing of the land claim and self-government agreements for the 410 members of the Ta’an Kwach’an Council.  Among the political leaders on hand for the ceremony were Ta’an hereditary Chief Glenn Grady, Ta’an chair John Burdek, federal Indian Affairs Minister Bob Nault and Premier Pat Duncan.  Speaker after speaker took turns thanking everybody from the front-line negotiators, to the elders who refused to lose the vision of Lake Laberge Chief Jim Boss. It was Boss, while witnessing the pressure gold rush stampeders were putting on land and resources, who wrote King Edward VII a 100 years ago to the day yesterday seeking protection for the aboriginal way of life.  ...  The Ta’an became the eighth of 14 Yukon first nations to reach a final agreement.  Under provisions of the settlement, Ta’an will receive ownership of 785 square kilometres (303 square miles), of which 388 square kilometres will be category A lands – surface and subsurface ownership while 396 sq. km will be category B land – surface ownership only.  In addition to the A and B settlement lands, the first nation has also negotiated ownership to numerous site-specific parcels of land....  The first nation will receive $26.95 million in compensation payments over the next 15 years minus the $10.07 million it borrowed from Canada to negotiate its final agreements.  In addition, the Ta’an Kwach’an Council will receive a one-time payment of $3.5 million as the result of the Government of Canada’s decision to pay interest on the compensation money back to 1997.  ...  “This day of celebration has been a long time in the making, it has taken a lot of hard work to get to this historic moment for the people of Ta’an Kwach’an,” Ta’an elder Frances Woolsey said in her address to the audience.  ... “Today we can be proud of what we achieved as a people.”   ... Yukon MP Larry Bagnell told the audience the significance of the day lay in the appreciation of what people were witnessing.  “How many Canadians have been in a room where we have created a new government, a government that will be governing themselves for generations to come?”  Following more than an hour of celebratory speeches, the political leaders and elders finished signing the last of the necessary documents – 56 in all – and then sat briefly for group photographs. ... It was a day of serious significance for the Ta’an, but MC Bob Charlie made sure the celebration was not without humour and laughter. It was a day of traditional drumming, of songs and prayer in both Southern Tutchone and English.  CYFN Grand Chief Ed Schultz told the audience in his address that while it took a relatively small team of Ta’an representatives to negotiate the settlement, the entire membership must participate in the new system of governance. ... Ta’an youth Nicole Kuster said there needs to be more involvement in first nation affairs by the aboriginal youth. ... Premier Pat Duncan, like others before her, recognized the aboriginal pioneers of yesteryear who refused to let go of their drive to build a new future for Yukon first nations. ... “As someone who grew up in the Yukon, I am honoured to take part in this signing ceremony,” Duncan said. “The signing of these agreements is particularly important because – as of today – more than half of Yukon first nations are self governing. This means better government for all Yukon people.  .... The signing of these agreements is a stepping stone for all our people to continue to make progress – to continue to work together to manage the Yukon Territory as partners, to reach our common goals and resolve issues.”       *     Northern News Services by Dave Sullivan, Hay River - Let's embrace the global economy, says Premier Stephen Kakfwi.  Because of oil, gas and diamonds, "we are enjoying an economy that is performing very well," he told a Hay River audience last week.  In a wide-ranging "state of the union" speech to about 140 at a Rotary Club lunch, the premier spoke of preparing the territories to be a more than a bit player on the world scene, and the need for more federal support to help make that happen. But his criticism of federal funding levels and control over resource revenue was muted.   He reiterated the importance of Prime Minister Jean Chretien and U.S. President George Bush having a discussion about the region, and that a decision made by an aboriginal group one day is discussed the next day in a Houston boardroom. ... He predicted the North, with help from the transnationals, will carve out its own spot and be recognized internationally under the new business reality.  To make corporations feel even more welcome though, the territories needs to provide them with the right tools like better highways, he said.  "We will continue to work to improve infrastructure to serve our residents and the needs of industry."  Despite the lack of infrastructure, Kakfwi said last week's announcement about the Aboriginal Pipeline Group taking the next, $250-million step is a sign the government has done a good job opening doors to business.  One thing that will help, Kakfwi said, is for the territories to have a proper name.  He said two MLAs will be reporting to the legislature in March on the name-change idea.  ... For the remainder of his term, Kakfwi said his government will "ensure the land is protected for all our future generations," but that idea will be balanced against resource development goals.     *     Northern News Services by Thorunn Howatt, Yellowknife - People in the territory are pumped after gas producers said they will spend $250 million in pursuit of a Mackenzie Valley pipeline.  "You don't spend a quarter of a billion dollars without being fairly sure that you are going to go through with the project," said Lynette Storoz, marketing spokesperson for Northern Transportation Company Ltd. (NTCL) in Hay River.  ... "It's not just pipe. It's camps and fuel and equipment and people. So there will be increased air traffic and road traffic," she said, referring to the project as a huge logistical puzzle. And it could take thousands of people to put together.  "Any able-bodied person now living in the Northwest Territories is going to be employed. It is a tremendous opportunity for Northerners," she said. ... All aspects of the potential line are still up in the air, she said. ... She summed up the questions surrounding the massive proposed project: "What sized pipe? How many years? How many places do you want to stage? Where the pipe will be bought? How will it be bought? Are there mills in North America that can mill it? If there are, do they have the capacity? If not, how long until they can build the capacity? How much is railed? How much is trucked? How much comes through Hay River? How much comes around Barrow? Where do you build the camps for the people? Where do you find the people? What are the benefit agreements for the people along the river? What about training programs? How much equipment? Will the work be done over three seasons or four seasons? How much aircraft is required?"  Companies in Yellowknife are also getting ready for a possible pipe. Braden-Burry Expediting is planning to form a joint venture with the Inuvialuit Development Corporation that would get it into the oil and gas field expediting business based out of Inuvik. That announcement was coincidentally made at the same time as the pipeline application announcement.  "The reason we wanted to get involved was because of the interest in oil and gas," said Braden-Burry's chairperson Gord Stewart.  Stewart said additional employment in Inuvik will probably be part of the joint venture's business plan.  The Inuvialuit Development Corporation (IDC), based in Inuvik, also stands to make big gains from the construction of a pipeline. The development arm of the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation is involved in everything from air transport to gas exploration through a number of joint ventures. But it isn't putting all its eggs in one basket.  "We won't put any really serious money down until we have some indication of where the pipeline is going and if we do have money down, we make sure it is backed up for the length of the project," said IDC's Patrick Schmidt.   Western Geco has been busy with exploration work in the Beaufort-Delta for the last few years. "There's not much money made with stranded gas so everyone's hoping a pipeline eventually comes through," said Western Geco spokesperson O.D. Hansen. But he cautioned the possibility of an Alaskan pipeline is very real. "It's not a given that the pipeline is going to follow just because the permitting has been done," he said.  Exploration projects are often energy-price driven and gas has been selling low. "If anything there have been cutbacks in our programs rather than increases."  George Moskal is working as an expeditor for Western Geco and has been moving to Inuvik for the seasonal work season since 1972. A pipeline would make his life a bit more stable.  "It would be good if it did come through. It's going to be exciting and it's going to be busy. I think it's going to work out in the long run. Maybe we'll be here for the next 10 to 12 years."     *     CBC, Iqaluit, Nunavut - The Nunavut government's science advisor says a new northern chairs program will continue to change the way research is done in the arctic.  The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research council is putting $6 million over five years into the chairs program.  Bruce Rigby says he was hoping that it would be more than that, but he says it's a good start.     *    National Post, OTTAWA - Jean Chrétien will unveil a major Cabinet shakeup today, elevating John Manley to his second-in-command.  See the official release outlining all changes here, including: "The Honourable Ralph Goodale, who was previously Minister of Natural Resources, becomes Leader of the Government in the House of Commons."

1-14: National Post, by Claudia Cattaneo, CALGARY - French oil supermajor TotalFinaElf is considering a "black knight" bid for U.S. rival Conoco Inc. that could break up a US$35-billion proposed merger between Conoco and Phillips Petroleum Co., a British newspaper reported yesterday.    *     Peninsula Clarion-When the Alaska Legislature convenes on Monday, it will face one issue that overwhelms all others in importance: the state's $900 million-plus fiscal gap.  (See related stories.)    *     7th Annual Pacific Rim  Construction Oil Mining Expo & Conference; 2-20/21 (also, linked in right column, Upcoming Events): This prestigious event brings together key foreign & local personnel from the various industries, services & government ministries who work together to further development of construction, oil & mining industries in Alaska and Pacific Rim.  Over 250 vendors display the latest in products, services, equipment, and technology, integrating contractor and producer perspectives to bring attendees the largest and most comprehensive industry exposition in Alaska.     *     Henry Hub Natural Gas Prices: 1-11, $2.31; 1-4, $2.35; year ago, $8.95.      *        Watch for our report tomorrow on busy Alaska meeting schedule Round Oak Publishing arranged for their co-author of "The Color of Oil" this week.  Author, Ron Oligney, is also co-author of "The Imperatives of Arctic Natural Gas Development," and will address IAEE tomorrow.

“With the new Administration in Washington, D.C.,” he said, “the Department of the Interior has put more emphasis on energy development around the Nation,”  and Alaska will play a key role....  John Goll

REPORT: Alliance 1-10-02 meeting.  Alaska Representative Jim Whitaker, a gas reserves tax advocate whose recent newspaper column we link for your information, addressed Alliance members at the Anchorage Petroleum Club; subject: "State's Comprehensive Budget & Fiscal Policy".   Members also heard from John Goll, Regional Director for Alaska of the U.S. Department of Interior Minerals Management Service.  

Rep. Whitaker (Photo) is widely recognized for having sponsored a North Slope Gas reserves tax bill last spring.  Addressing an Alliance group dependent on a positive investment climate and industry investment, he said Thursday, "I look at you as a friendly but tough crowd".  Whitaker said the state is facing three crises:

  • A shrinking economy.  "We have the dubious honor," he said, "of being the fastest, shrinking economy in the U.S."
  • Budget shortfalls.   "We have a billion dollar deficit facing us in the coming fiscal year."  He said the Constitutional Budget Reserve Fund, with a current balance of about $2.8 billion is " longer sufficient for feeding deficits above $300 million annually ... and will be gone in about 2 1/2 years."  He repeated similar recent reports by Senate President Rick Halford and House Speaker Brian Porter that, "...we have cut $250 million from the budget in the last five years...and it was painful.  Had we not done that," he said, "our annual deficit would now be closer to $2 billion."
  • An ethnically based cultural clash.  He said that tightening budgets were causing Alaskans to "compete for declining resources".
"I came to give you some realistic solutions for dealing with these crises," he said, including:
  • Cost control.  Senator Dave Donley's bill to strengthen the constitutional spending limit " a good piece of legislation which you would adopt in your own business," he said.
  • Use of Permanent Fund earnings.  The $6 billion Earnings Reserve Account could be tapped for about $200 million per year without harming its principal.
  • Sales tax.  Whitaker's approach is a 6%, 5 month per year, seasonal sales tax, producing about $500 million annually.
  • Constitutional Budget Reserve.  The small deficit remaining could be drawn from the Constitutional Budget Reserve without depleting it within the next 2 1/2 years.
  • Economic growth.  Whitaker then offered his own economic development plan, consisting of:
    • 50% severance tax reduction for increased production by existing producers.
    • Severance tax and state income tax forgiveness on first 10 years of production by new producers.
  • Gas reserves tax.  If North Slope gas production hasn't occurred within 10 years of the law's passage, a producer could give the leases back to the State or pay taxes on the reserves. (See links)
Northern Gas Pipelines asked Whitaker if reserves tax provisions shouldn't be included in lease documents prior to the parties signing them rather than promulgated after the fact.  "In a perfect world, you would make it a part of the terms and conditions of the lease," he said.  He added that his intent was to give incentives for production, not to tax.  A producer representative questioned Whitaker on discriminating production tax benefits between existing producers and new producers.  Whitaker indicated a desire to hear all sides of the issue.

1-12/13-Weekend: Houston Chronicle, Reuters-LONDON -- Oil giant BP reported on Thursday a lower fourth-quarter tax rate than some analysts had expected, but the good news did nothing for its shares as it painted a grim underlying picture for the industry.     *     This notice from the Alaska Department of Natural Resources makes two points regarding the ANS royalty gas solicitation: it clarifies that the State's Solicitation for Offers is seeking proposals for consideration under the procedures set out in 11 AAC 03.030-070 and it extends the deadline for submitting applications for qualifications to January 31, 2002.       *        (News & Comment) Northern Gas Pipelines learned Friday that Curtis Thayer (Photo-Right) has moved on from his position as  spokesman for the Alaska Gas Producers Pipeline Team (AGPPT).  We have appreciated, during AGPPT's feasibility study, how Thayer capably carried the "media outreach" ball for the team, engaging in dialog with press from around the world.  In addition, he represented AGPPT at most community meetings of Governor Tony Knowles' Alaska Highway Pipeline Policy Council that we covered.  Dave MacDowell, (Photo-left) AGPPT external affairs manager, indicated that Thayer's transition was expected. "We have been planning all along to shift media relations back to the three sponsor companies as our joint study reaches completion," he said.  "Work will shift to the individual companies now in the process of evaluating the results of our $100 million effort.  They will be best able to respond to questions about status and potential next steps. Curtis has done a terrific job for our team, and we will miss him. I know that he will continue to be successful in whatever he chooses to do next."  Northern Gas Pipelines asked MacDowell if Thayer's departure signals "the beginning of the end" of the AGPPT joint study effort. MacDowell said  that the, "...feasibility study scope has been quite specific, and has been, to a large extent, completed. Current activity is heavily focused on ensuring documentation is completed effectively, along with some additional field work late this winter."  He said that as various study components are completed, team members are returning to their sponsor companies.   The team currently employees about 65, down from its peak of 100 employees.  MacDowell said future work will be driven mostly by the pace of federal regulatory enabling legislation. "As we have said many times before, an efficient regulatory process is a 'must have' for any Alaska gas pipeline project to move forward," he said.  Individual company contacts for future inquiries are: Ronnie Chappell (BP) - (907 )564-5404; Dawn Patience (Phillips) - (907) 265-6134; Bob Davis (ExxonMobil) - (713) 656-7544.     *     Alaska pipeline momentumNorthern Gas Pipelines-Alaska Highway gas pipeline project companies visited producers and state officials in Anchorage this past week.  Northern Gas Pipelines heard from U.S. Senator Frank Murkowski's office Friday that he anticipates meeting with producers and pipeline companies involved in the Alaska North Slope natural gas project in early February.    "We have extended an invitation to the producers and to the pipeline companies to get together here in Washington.  My understanding is that they've pretty much uniformly accepted.  I've had conversations with the principals of some of the companies and they're enthusiastic," Murkowski said. "The Governor and representatives from both the Alaska House and Senate are invited.  We will discuss just what specific requirements the participants are going to require to proceed with the project and what role the existing pipeline companies might play," Murkowski said.  On ANWR, Murkowski said there is no way to tell at this point when or if an energy bill will come before the Senate.  Democratic Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle has said a bill will come up, but Murkowski noted Daschle has not said whether he will permit it to come to a final vote.  The House has already passed energy legislation which authorizes exploration in the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.     *

“This gives the citizens of Alaska a seat at the table for the development of a gasline and we didn’t have that until this initiative came along. The signatures we’ve collected statewide represent the will of the people,” said Scott Heyworth (Photo-right) chair of the committee.

The Citizens Initiative for the All-Alaska Gasline Friday announced they had surpassed their goal of gathering 40,000 signatures for the November 5, 2002 General Election Ballot.  In a release, the group said that this weekend it will deliver 42,105 signatures to the state Division of Elections in Anchorage. According to initiative sponsors, the Initiative creates a State Gas Authority which would oversee the construction by the private sector of a 800 mile gas pipeline parallel to the TAPS oil pipeline using the existing  corridor. The Authority would buy the gas at the wellhead, construct the pipeline and compressor stations, build an LNG facility at Anderson Bay in Valdez and ship the gas to multiple markets along the West Coast of America, the Pacific Rim and also provide in-state gas to Alaskan Residents.  Cost of the project would be about $8 Billion. The project would be financed by private investors, possibly including some percentage of ownership by the State of Alaska. The majority of the debt would be financed by long term revenue bonds issued by the Authority. By initiative law, in a section titled “Credit not Pledged to the State”, the Authority would not be indebted to the State or encumber the Permanent Fund. The gas markets would determine the project’s viability, supporters said.  (Further reference here.)

1-11:  WHITEHORSE STAR, by Chuck Tobin: Ground-floor involvement by aboriginal people in the proposed development of a Mackenzie Valley pipeline is a success story in waiting, says an aboriginal leader.  Nellie Cournoyea (Photo) chair of the Mackenzie Valley Aboriginal Pipeline Corp., told the Star earlier this week the opportunities for valley residents will be plentiful and long-lasting.  She said it’s not just about building the $3-billion trunk line between Inuvik and northern Alberta. Rather, it’s about providing communities along the way with the option of delivering natural gas as a source of energy to their residents, she argues.  ... “It is very significant,” Cournoyea said of the partnership between the aboriginal pipeline corporation and the Mackenzie Valley Producers Group. The group is comprised of Imperial Oil Resources, Conoco Canada, Shell Canada Ltd. and ExxonMobil Canada.  Cournoyea said there has never been a partnership like this between an aboriginal organization and industry on such a major endeavour.  “We want to see people trained, and long-term jobs.”  The aboriginal corporation and delta producers announced on Monday their intent to spend between $200 million and $250 million over the next year to prepare the Mackenzie pipeline proposal for a regulatory application.  Cournoyea said feasibility work to date has shown the stand-alone, $3-billion proposal as economically viable, based on the known natural gas reserves in the delta of six trillion cubic feet, and there’s an expectation of finding more reserves.  Hart Searle, an Imperial Oil employee and spokesman for the delta producers, said the parties involved will have a much clearer picture of the pipeline’s economic viability once the regulatory application work is complete.  But like Cournoyea, Searle insisted nothing to date has suggested a trunk line running south from Inuvik isn’t feasible.  Cournoyea said the partnership would like to work through the regulatory process in three to four years, though some believe five years are more realistic.  ...  Meanwhile, the three major producers of Alaska natural gas are crunching the results of a $100-million U.S. analysis of a north-south pipeline to carry North Slope reserves to southern Canada and the U.S. The Alaska group is looking at two routes: down the Alaska Highway or across the Beaufort Sea to the Mackenzie Delta and down the Mackenzie Valley.  It’s believed the Alaska producers are on target to make an announcement sometime before the end of March regarding the viability of a transcontinental pipeline, and the preferred route if it’s shown to be viable.  Cournoyea said there was never any consideration given to the possibility of piping Alaska’s reserves down the Mackenzie Valley in the feasibility study into a stand-alone Mackenzie Valley pipeline.  The Mackenzie Valley proposal is based entirely on reserves in the delta, she said.     *      National Post Business Magazine, by Mark Anderson-THIS IS THE MOST IN-DEPTH STORY WE'VE SEEN YET ON THE MACKENZIE VALLEY PIPELINE PROJECT, NOT TO BE MISSED!  (Thanks to the Canadian Institute's Carl Stavros, for this tip.)     *     VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--Westcoast Energy Inc. announced that the Supreme Court of British Columbia has approved the plan of arrangement by which Westcoast Energy will be acquired by Duke Energy Corporation.  Westcoast is a participant in the Alaska Highway Gas Pipeline Project.     *     Fort Simpson, N.W.T. - Deh Cho chiefs say ... they don't support research being done by the producer's consultants.     *     Yellowknife, N.W.T. - Community leaders in Fort Providence say a new study shows the time is right to build a bridge across the Mackenzie River.

1-10:  FINANCIAL TIMES by David Buchan, London & Julie Earle, New York-BP, the UK-US oil group, is scaling back its ambitions in Alaska with the decision to shelve a $600m oilfield development....  (Detailed report)       *       Peninsula Clarion, by Hal Spence-There may be no perfect solution for bridging Alaska's growing fiscal gap, and state lawmakers, the administration and the general public shouldn't wait for one to come along, Lt. Gov. Fran Ulmer (Photo, 10-2) said in Soldotna Tuesday. "Remember that old saying, "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good?" Ulmer asked. "You know, sometimes if you keep looking for the perfect answer, sometimes you just can't get there from here. I want to say in regards to the fiscal gap, we have got to craft a solution that may not be perfect, but is a compromise so that we can have a stability in our economy that allows businesses, big and small, as well as individuals to feel confident about where we are headed as a state."  (Our related reports.  Also, Rep. Jim Whitaker faces the  Alliance this morning; we will report.)     *     Congressional Quarterly: A day after House Resources Committee Chairman James V. Hansen, R-Utah., announced his retirement, a fight is brewing over who will succeed him. "I would be less than candid if I didn't say I was interested," Elton Gallegly, R-Calif., said today. "Being chairman of the Resources Committee would be a real plum for someone like me who is interested in land issues and is from the West." H. James Saxton, R-.N.J., who is a notch ahead of Gallegly in seniority, said yesterday that he is interested in leading the committee. Saxton is a champion of environmental causes and has frequently butted heads with Western Republicans on the committee. "I have great respect for Jim Saxton, but it would be very difficult for me to support him on many issues that come before the committee," Gallegly said.     *     Northern News Services , by Richard Gleeson, Yellowknife - The most lasting benefit of a Mackenzie Valley pipeline -- if one is built -- may have nothing to do with oil or gas.  Many Northern leaders see the pipeline as a golden opportunity to seize a long-sought prize, a Mackenzie Valley Highway.  "This is an opportune time to do it," said Economic Development Minister Jim Antoine (Photo...obtain recent speech here.). "The mobilization costs would be lower, the equipment would be there. It's worth looking at." ... Both Antoine and Transportation Minister Joe Handley cautioned that a pipeline is far from a done deal but said the project brings the territories closer to a road than ever before. "This is a tremendous opportunity," said Handley. He said a road up the valley would reduce the cost of living in communities in the valley, form a northern loop with the Dempster Highway that would boost tourism, and spur non-renewable exploration in the Valley. ... "We're not in the road-building business," said Imperial Oil spokesperson Hart Searle. "That's not typically what we do. I have not heard any discussion about a road." ... Cece Hodgson-McCauley.... Norman Wells resident and founding chief of the Inuvik Dene band has been lobbying Ottawa for a Mackenzie Valley highway for years. "If (the oil and gas companies) want to pitch in, okay, but we're not waiting for them," Hodgson-McCauley said. "We've already waited too long."     *     CBC, Yellowknife, N.W.T. - The N.W.T. government is expecting good things to happen from an application to build a pipeline through the territory.... Jim Antoine, the new minister responsible for the pipeline, expects a positive spin-off for the territory. "We are particularly pleased that the aboriginal people in the Northwest Territories are going to be a partner in this and are working to have a significant share of the ownership of the proposed pipeline," he says. "So definitely this is going to be a boost to the economy particularly along the Mackenzie Valley route and specifically in the Mackenzie Delta."       *     Northern News Services, by Thorunn Howatt, Yellowknife - Whether a Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline is ever built remains to be seen, but Northerners moved one step closer Monday.... "To us it's a green light that we needed to turn on," said Mackenzie Valley Aboriginal Pipeline Corporation chair, Nellie Cournoyea. The announcement will help settle jitters for those banking on a $3 billion pipeline proposed to get Canadian natural gas out of the ground and off to market. ... Pipeline construction will have a $338 million impact on the Northwest Territories economy according to a Government of the Northwest Territories study. The spin-offs from further exploration total $235 million territorially while the impact on the national economy tops $1.4 billion. "We are putting together a business plan. We have already talked to several federal agencies," she said adding that her group's share of the project definition stage and related hearings will add up to about $60 million. Cournoyea is confident the federal government will see the pipeline as a national employment issue. "Our business plan would show the positive benefits of supporting the aboriginal people in ownership rather than in just a few token jobs here and there." The much-anticipated application announcement came on the heels of completion of a two-year feasibility study meant to gauge aboriginal and Northerners' support. In 1977, producers' dreams of a Mackenzie pipeline were halted after the Berger Inquiry pointed to aboriginal opposition. Some investors were financially devastated when the proposal fell through.  "We are sufficiently encouraged that longer term demand for natural gas will remain strong both in Canada and the United States," said Imperial Oil Limited's public affairs spokesperson, Hart Searle. "We know that the prices are volatile. That just reinforced the need to base our outlooks on the longer term fundamental market forces." The next three years will include technical and environmental work supporting application as well as agreement of benefit and access plans.

1-9: No stakeholder group knows northern development issues from a more personal perspective than Canadian Aboriginal and Alaska Native citizens in affected areas.  The North Slope village of Kaktovik tells Northern Gas Pipelines it is in the final stages of producing a state-of-the-art movie defining the ANWR issue from the perspective of people who live in the area.  Readers interested in obtaining a copy may write us here.  As a public service, we'll pass your request on to Village leaders so that they can be in direct contact with you.  We think you will enjoy this personal interaction...and the film.  (Photo, old umiat)  For more First Peoples information, here is our reference page.    *     FOLLOWING IS ONE OF THE MOST COMPLETE CURRENT STATUS ARTICLES APPEARING ANYWHERE IN NORTH AMERICA: Whitehorse Star, by Chuck Tobin-A decision to advance a stand-alone Mackenzie Valley pipeline project does not close the door on a future partnership with the Alaskan producers of natural gas, says a spokesman for the Mackenzie Delta producers.  Hart Searle emphasized in an interview Monday the decision to advance the Mackenzie project is based entirely on the economic feasibility analysis of the six trillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves in the delta.  “Not at any time did we contemplate Alaska gas,” Searle said from his Calgary office.  He noted, however, the decision to advance a $3-billion stand-alone Mackenzie project does not automatically cancel out any possibility of there ever being any future discussions with the Alaska producers.  ... The Alaskan producers of North Slope gas are currently crunching the results of a $100 million US research effort carried out over the last year.  The producers are looking at the feasibility of two routes to pipe their product to the lower 48 states. One option is to build a natural gas pipeline from Prudhoe Bay to Fairbanks, and then follow the Alaska Highway corridor south to central Alberta.  The second option – the over-the-top route – is to lay an offshore pipeline across the Beaufort Sea from Prudhoe Bay to the Mackenzie Delta, then go south down the Mackenzie Valley to northern Alberta.  Searle said if the Alaska producers indicated an interest in working together with the Mackenzie Valley project, the Mackenzie Delta producers would certainly be open to discussions. “But that is not our base case,” he said. ...  Greg Komaromi, the Yukon’s director of oil and gas, said yesterday’s announcement by the MacKenzie Valley consortium killed any chance of the Alaska producers going over-the-top with their pipeline.  ...  Press secretary Bob King of Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles’ office suggested in an interview Monday the decision by the Mackenzie group to pursue its own project is based on a recognition that the over-the-top route was a non-starter anyway you looked at it – environmentally, and technically.  “I think it is good news for the Alaska Highway route, in the sense that we have always envisioned these two projects going hand-in-hand,” King said. “There is certainly enough demand in the U.S. and Canada for both projects.”  ...  Curtis Thayer, spokesman for the Alaska producers, said this morning the three companies – ExxonMobile, BP and Phillips – are still expected to make an announcement on their findings before the end of March.  Monday’s announcement by the Mackenzie Delta group has had absolutely no bearing on the proposals by the Alaska producers, he said....     *     Oil & Gas Journal-The Mackenzie Delta Producers Group and the Mackenzie Valley Aboriginal Pipeline Corp. (MVAPC) have begun the project definition phase for the proposed Mackenzie Delta pipeline.     *     Yellowknife, N.W.T. - A natural gas pipeline down the Mackenzie Valley is a step closer to reality.      *     See our reports (1 - 7) of significant developments in Canada.  Also, see our report on Canada's new gas pipeline Cooperation Plan, below.

1-8: NATIONAL POST by Carol Howes and Claudia Cattaneo-CALGARY -A consortium of oil and gas producers in the Mackenzie Delta has moved ahead of a competing group in Alaska in the race to bring Arctic gas to North American consumers.   (Comment-Northern Gas Pipelines believes the two producer groups are not in competition with each other.  Delta gas will be needed for oil sands development in Canada.  The more remote North Slope reserves will be required by Lower 48 demand at such time as gas prices are projected to support a project.   There are, however, a northern and southern route competing for the transmission of the Alaska reserves.  -dh)     *     CBC-YELLOWKNIFE - Gas producers and their aboriginal partners in northern Canada have decided to move ahead with plans to build a natural gas pipeline down the Mackenzie River Valley by filing a formal application.       *    ANCHORAGE CHAMBER-Yesterday, Alaska Senate President Rick Halford and House Speaker Brian Porter told a crowded audience at the 4th Avenue theatre that while much has been done to repair Alaska's budget woes, more must be done.   Porter began by recounting the Legislature's recent accomplishments, including educational, welfare and tort reform, and engaging the State in a process of 'results based budgeting'.  Before introducing Halford, the Speaker took a poll of audience interest in contributing to the deficit with increased taxes on citizens and companies.  There was broad support for such action.  Halford passed out a 'fiscal gap' chart and said, "...we are hundreds and hundreds of millions in the hole.  The first thing to do when you're in that big a hole is stop digging."  (Please go to our new Chamber page for the complete story.)    *     ADN, by Tony Hopfinger-BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. announced Monday it is laying off 120 Anchorage-based employees and 75 contract workers as it focuses on oil deposits close to existing North Slope oil fields rather than developing frontier fields.     *     Governor Tony Knowles (Photo-lower right, 9-10-01) and Senator Frank Murkowski (Photo-bottom right, 11-3-01) lament BP cuts in Alaska workforce.   WASHINGTON -- Murkowski said, "Today I was fully briefed by BP on the scope and scale of their activities in Alaska.  I want to extend my sympathies to the loyal BP employees and their families who are directly impacted by this cutback.  "While I am very disappointed about BP's decision to scale back exploration and development operations in Alaska, I have been reassured that the company is not intending to pull out of the state.  In fact, BP has indicated that they are going to concentrate on developing technologies that could potentially bring to market  billions of barrels of heavy oil at Milne Point and West Sak.  "It appears to me that BP's decision to scale back exploration and development activities may be related to long waits and paperwork associated with the permitting process.  I believe that process should be streamlined and that the state should put more emphasis on expediting the permit process.  "Most importantly, BP's decision demonstrates the need for the state to diversify our economy and develop all of our resources in an environmentally sound manner.  At the same time, it is absolutely imperative that the federal government allow far more exploration and development on federal lands in the state including ANWR.  That is why I will continue the fight in the Senate to open ANWR so as to provide more Alaskan families with high paying jobs and to ensure our nation's energy security." ///////////////  JUNEAU-Knowles said, "BP's announcement today of staff reductions and a retreat from the  development of frontier fields is disappointing for Alaska and disheartening for those employees and contractors directly affected.  I have offered the assistance of the state Department of Labor's jobs division to do everything possible to help ease the transition for these highly talented Alaska workers.  "While I concur with BP's confidence in existing fields, I disagree with their approach on frontier development.  I remain bullish about Alaska's oil and gas potential. Our 'open and ready for business' partnership with this vital industry has kept it healthier for longer than many predicted.  Last fall's North Slope area-wide lease sale set a record for state lands leased for exploration--more than 713,000 acres--and attracted new partners to the North Slope like Alberta Energy, Unocal, and Burlington, to name a few.  "BP remains a significant holder of exploration leases and the state will work with the company to fulfill its commitments that these areas are aggressively explored.  "Likewise, there's renewed interest in Cook Inlet oil and natural gas exploration. The state is responding to all this interest with 16 area-wide lease sales in the next five years.  We're also keeping up the full court press on development in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  And by partnering with leading pipeline companies and the gas producer owners, I believe an Alaska Highway natural gas pipeline project is on the near horizon.  "Alaska remains America's energy storehouse with significant resources yet to be developed.  We will continue to seek productive partnerships with current and new companies to develop this resource.  As governor, I will continue to make sure Alaska is on the leading edge of oil and gas development, competitive in the world market, and a good place to invest exploration dollars."        *     Financial Post, by Keith Kalawsky-Canadian business leaders oppose new taxation powers for cash-hungry municipal governments, according to the latest COMPAS Inc. poll conducted for the Financial Post.     *     Peninsula Clarion-The long overdue debate in the United States Senate on oil and gas exploration on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge finally began in the first week of December.      *        YELLOWKNIFE -- (Note: in our email alert to readers, we headlined this story, perhaps implying approval of the project through this plan.  Rather it is a plan for conducting an efficient, timely and inclusive review process the outcome of which will be determined by the various authorities that have jurisdiction.  We apologize if any reader was misled.   -dh)  The chairs of the boards and agencies responsible for assessing and regulating energy developments in the Northwest Territories released their draft Cooperation Plan today for public comment. The Cooperation Plan outlines, in principle, how the parties would coordinate their response to any proposal to build a major natural gas pipeline through the Northwest Territories.  The public will have until March 8, 2002 to provide comments on this plan.  The draft Cooperation Plan has been presented by the Chairs of the Boards and Agencies to the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, the Honourable Robert Nault.  The parties involved in developing the draft Cooperation Plan are: the National Energy Board, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, the Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board, the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board, the NWT Water Board, the Government of the Northwest Territories, the Environmental Impact Screening Committee and the Environmental Impact Review Board for the Inuvialuit Settlement Region, the Inuvialuit Settlement Region Land Administration, the Inuvialuit Game Council, the Sahtu Land and Water Board, and the Gwich'in Land and Water Board.  Copies of the draft Cooperation Plan are available at the office locations and websites listed in Annex A.  Comments on the Draft Cooperation Plan (Adobe Acrobat pdf format - 327k) may be submitted to:

Cooperation Plan comments
Project Manager
Box 938, 200 Scotia Centre
X1A 2N7
Fax (867) 766-7074

For further information, contact:

Ross Hicks  National Energy Board 403-299-3930
Elise Dhaussy Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency 819-953-4054
Frank Pope or 
Vern Christensen
Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board 867-766-7055
Zoe Raemer Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development 867-669-2575
Norm Snow Joint Secretariat for the Inuvialuit Settlement Region 867-777-2828
Melody McLeod Mackenzie Valley Land & Water Board 867-669-0506
Gordon Wray NWT Water Board 867-669-2772
George Govier Sahtu Land and Water Board 867-598-2413 
Robert Alexis Jr. Gwich'in Land and Water Board 867-777-4954

1-7:  CANADIAN MOMENTUM CONTINUES!  YELLOWKNIFE -- The chairs of the boards and agencies responsible for assessing and regulating energy developments in the Northwest Territories released their draft Cooperation Plan today for public comment. The Cooperation Plan outlines, in principle, how the parties would coordinate their response to any proposal to build a major natural gas pipeline through the Northwest Territories.  (We'll have a full report early tomorrow morning, plus contacts and a document for you to download.  -dh)     *       Calgary, AB., January 7, 2002 -The Mackenzie Delta Producers Group and the Mackenzie Valley Aboriginal Pipeline Corporation (MVAPC) have announced their intent to begin preparing regulatory applications needed to develop onshore natural gas resources in the Mackenzie Delta, including a Mackenzie Valley Pipeline. Since initiating a feasibility study into Mackenzie Delta gas development in early 2000, the Producers Group -- Imperial Oil Resources, Conoco Canada, Shell Canada Limited and ExxonMobil Canada -- has consulted with more than 100 parties, including Northern communities, governments and oil and gas companies. During the project definition phase, the public will continue to be consulted to ensure their input is represented and considered. In October 2001, the Producers Group and the MVAPC, representing the Aboriginal peoples of the Northwest Territories, signed a memorandum of understanding to guide future work on economic and timely development of a Mackenzie Valley Pipeline. The memorandum was signed in the Aboriginal community of N'Dilo, near Yellowknife, N.W.T. The pipeline would be anchored by nearly six trillion cubic feet of natural gas at the Taglu, Parsons Lake and Niglintgak gas fields, and would be accessible to other existing and future natural gas discoveries in the Mackenzie Delta and Mackenzie Valley regions. Today's announcement signals the producers' intent to move from the feasibility study phase to the project definition phase. This phase includes technical, environmental, consultation and commercial work required to prepare, file and support regulatory applications for field, gas-gathering and pipeline facilities. Work will also begin to develop benefit plans, access agreements and other arrangements in support of the applications.  "Announcing our intent to proceed with the project definition phase demonstrates the confidence of the Producers Group and the MVAPC that development of Mackenzie Delta gas, including a Mackenzie Valley Pipeline, is potentially commercial and can be beneficial to the people of the North and to all resource developers," said K.C. Williams, senior vice-president, Imperial Oil, on behalf of the Producers Group. "The historic memorandum of understanding signed in October has the support of Aboriginal leaders who represent about three-quarters of the Aboriginal people of the Northwest Territories. We remain committed to continuing the dialogue with all Aboriginal leaders and communities, independent of whether they have ratified the memorandum of understanding. While we are optimistic, the ultimate decision to build the pipeline can only be made after obtaining regulatory approval, and will be a function of many factors, including natural gas markets, construction costs, and regulatory and fiscal certainty."  Nellie Cournoyea, chair of the MVAPC, said, "The decision by the MVAPC and the Producers Group to proceed with the preparation of regulatory applications is a significant step toward a Mackenzie Valley Pipeline. The business partnership negotiated with the producers allows all Aboriginal people of the North to participate in and benefit from this opportunity, including parties who have not yet indicated their support."  "We are very pleased with the progress made over the past year," added Henry Sykes, president of Conoco Canada. "Moving to the project definition phase is a significant milestone in the development of this opportunity. This is pioneering work and we're creating new ways of doing business including better ways of partnering with northern communities. We can now start preparing the regulatory applications needed for the development of the Parsons Lake gas discovery, which we operate on behalf of ourselves and ExxonMobil Canada."  Ray Woods, senior operating officer, Resources, Shell Canada Limited, said: "We are one step closer today to developing Mackenzie Delta natural gas resources, including Shell's Niglintgak discovery. We would like to recognize the efforts of the MVAPC in helping to build the broad-based support that was key to taking the decision to proceed with the project definition phase."  Expenditures required to complete the project definition phase, which includes the preparation and regulatory review of the applications, are estimated at about $200 million to $250 million (Cdn.). Timing is dependent on a number of factors, including the regulatory review process. As part of regulatory application preparation, an environmental impact assessment including plans for environmental protection and subsequent monitoring will be prepared.  As the holder of the natural gas rights at Taglu, the largest of the three discovered Mackenzie Delta gas fields, Imperial is the designated operator of the gas gathering and pipeline systems.  Project overview   See our Project Information Page here.  Other Maps and Presentations are here.    *       Today, Alaska Senate President Rick Halford (Photo-right, 12-14) and House Speaker Brian Porter (Photo-left, 12-14) will address the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce on budget issues, which we will report to you later today or tomorrow.  See our earlier story here.   (Comment:  Northern Gas Pipelines has advised readers that a critical aspect of any Alaska gas pipeline is the State's approach to solving its fiscal crisis.  The reason for this counsel is the fiscal clarity any gas pipeline operator/investor will reasonably require when, as of this date, state leaders are facing a +/- $1 billion/year deficit.  Within 2 years there will be no savings accounts to support what has become a practice in recent years of budget balancing using depleting savings accounts.  Solving the crisis calls for exceptional political courage and statesmanship since new or expanded oil industry taxes would only repel long term investment, exacerbating future budget woes, while imposing taxes on citizens or reducing services will more immediately threaten leaders at election time.  It is a much larger problem for Alaska than the mere challenge of creating a gas pipeline, as traditional state taxes would only reap about 1/4 of projected deficits from a gas pipeline even if it were in operation within 2 years, which it cannot be.  Accordingly, budget policy must be set without regard to whether a gas pipeline is ultimately built.  Lastly, the citizens must assume the primary responsibility and a disciplined role now, after years of demanding services for which the oil & gas industry paid, in a wholly unwholesome atmosphere of 'entitlement'.  The disciplined will of a strong majority of voters, would clarify the path for their elected leaders.  The disciplined pathway embraces sacrifice but leads to to fiscal survival; the historical, undisciplined road can point only to fiscal calamity and further gas pipeline delay.  This story in the Peninsula Clarion sets the stage for Governor Tony Knowles' upcoming State of the State and budget speeches scheduled for delivery to the Legislature, and subsequent action.   This page provides more reference to the state budget challenge and related gas pipeline economic issues.  -dh)      *       JUNEAU -- Bill Hudson says the permanent fund dividend is in danger.  But the longtime Republican representative from Juneau says the danger is not the Fiscal Policy Caucus, the bipartisan group of legislators he co-chairs. Rather, the threat comes from the possibility of inaction on a long-range fiscal plan in the 2002 legislative session, he said.     *      Reuters, NEW YORK -- About 4,000 energy exploration jobs were lost in December, the Department of Labor reported Friday, as weak oil and gas prices cut into the budgets of oil companies.     *     Henry Hub Gas Prices: 1-4-02, $2.35; 12-28-01, $2.68; Year ago, $9.55.     *     CBC, Yellowknife, N.W.T. - Robert Nault, federal minister of Indian and Northern Affairs returns to the north.       *     On a lighter note: by popular demand (i.e. requests from those who did not win an earlier prize), here's another Reader Appreciation Prize contest, for the 38,888th reader.  The prize is a brand new condition, "Alaska Club" travel bag given supporters of Anchorage's bid for the 1994 Olympics, at a $1/4 million fundraiser organized by the Author at New York's Waldorf-Astoria, 3/88.    (Bag donated by Author and Bob Coe, Duty Free Shops.  As of 11 a.m. EST, no winner identified; we'll try for the 39,999th later this week.)        *     Mark your calendar for important upcoming programs, right column; or read reports on them here later!

1-5/6 (Weekend): WASHINGTON, D.C. - Alaska Sen. Frank Murkowski, the ranking member on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, responded to Senator Tom Daschle's comments yesterday.  He said, "Senator Daschle criticizes the President's energy plan for focusing mainly on 'oil drilling,' I would challenge him to read the plan, which includes many provisions such as alternative fuel sources, and improve energy efficiencies, and increase conservation. Conservation and domestic energy production must go hand in hand.  Neither can solve the energy dilemma this country faces alone.  Unlike the President's plan which is balanced and comprehensive, the Democratic plan introduced by Senator Daschle is a narrow, partisan measure that will do almost nothing to lessen our dependence on foreign sources of energy.  Senator Daschle is confused in his thinking that the transportation of existing natural gas from Alaska's North Slope can replace the billion barrels of oil next door in ANWR....  If Senator Daschle is so committed to energy, he should release the Energy Committee from his clutches, schedule a vote on an energy bill, and let the Senate work its will...."  *     See Author's latest gas pipeline related articles and photos in the Alaska Oil & Gas Reporter.   

1-4:  WASHINGTON-Today, U. S. Senator Frank Murkowski attacked Majority Leader Tom Daschle's position on President Bush's energy policy.   (See our Northern Gas Pipelines report tomorrow (Saturday) morning.        *        CBC, Yellowknife, N.W.T. - While Alaska producers say their $100 million feasibility study is done, producers in the Mackenzie Delta are still working on their study.  The four producers - Imperial Oil, Exxon-Mobil, Conoco-Phillips Canada and Shell Canada - launched their study almost two years ago.  ...  Hart Searle, the group's spokesman, says a decision will soon be made to move on from talking about the project to planning it.  "We're very close to being finished and we expect to be making a decision about moving forward to the next phase in early 2002," he says.  Arctic Resources Corporation has already made that decision. The company wants to build a pipeline that would move gas from both Alaska and the Mackenzie Delta. Even though the producers don't support Arctic Resources, the company is drawing up a preliminary information package for regulators.  It will include details about the pipeline corridor, how the project will be structured and financed, and a timetable.  Harvie Andre heads the Canadian arm of the company.   "We're in the final editing, if you will," he says. "It's coming along and we're very hopeful in the quite near future we'll be able to file."  If the Mackenzie Delta producers file as well, it'll be up to regulators to decide whether whether both projects are feasible.       *    Tip:  Perhaps Alaska housing developers should put northern experience to work in Yellowknife. -dh  NNS-Mayor Gord Van Tighem focuses on housing shortages.  NNS-Chamber projects need for 500-700 homes in next 3 years.    *       Financial Times, by Andrew Hill-Enron, the bankrupt energy trader, settled one of two legal disputes with Dynegy and allowed its rival and erstwhile suitor to acquire its Northern Natural Gas pipeline.    *      CALGARY, (The Canadian Press via COMTEX) -- After a year of unprecedented big-name takeovers in the Canadian oilpatch by American energy giants, you'd think a siege mentality would come over guys like Fred Woods.     *     1-17-01 Resource Development Council for Alaska speaker, Arctic Slope Regional Corporation (Photo-ASRC logo) Chairman, Jacob Adams.    *     Alaska Representative Jim Whitaker, a gas reserves tax advocate whose recent newspaper column we linked for your information, will address Alliance members at the Anchorage Petroleum Club on 1-10; subject: "State's Comprehensive Budget & Fiscal Policy".    *    IAEE, "Imperatives of Arctic Natural Gas Development" on noon, Tuesday January 15.      *     Tomorrow, we'll provide readers with links to the Author's latest gas pipeline related articles and photos in Alaska Oil and Gas Reporter.

1-3: CBC, Whitehorse, Yukon - America's oil industry heavyweights are preparing to make their decision on the fate of an Alaskan Gas Pipeline.  (Note: Correct title of individual mentioned in article is Curtis Thayer, Media Relations Spokesman, Alaska Gas Producers Pipeline Team.  Thayer told Northern Gas Pipelines this morning that the CBC interview occurred in early December.  As a point of clarification, he said, "The producer group is looking at possible cost savings to be achieved through technology advancements along with fiscal/regulatory clarity from various government bodies."  Also, see this Foothills story.  -dh)   *     Northern News Services, by Richard Gleeson, Yellowknife - New economic development funding from Ottawa appeared no closer at the end of the year than a cure for the flu bug that dogged Jim Antoine (Photo, Arctic Gas Symposium, 11-29-01) during a visit to Parliament Hill.  ...  "I said, if it's 'No' tell us 'No' instead of leaving us out there thinking there is a possibility," said the deputy premier. "We'd prefer to do something else than spend our time and resources on something that isn't going to happen. They didn't say no."  ... Submitted in October 2000 at the suggestion of federal Finance Minister Paul Martin, the strategy calls for Ottawa to contribute $234 million over four years toward Northern highways, training and economic development. The territorial government would contribute $105 million. ... "We keep talking about this, but there's nothing in there, we're not hearing much at all," said Inuvik Boot Lake MLA Floyd Roland, chair of the standing committee on governance and economic development.  ... During his trip to Ottawa, Antoine met with Northern Development Minister Robert Nault, Fisheries and Oceans Minister Herb Dahliwal and members of the Western and Northern Liberal caucus. ... "When you start talking about training and go see (Minister of Human Resources Development) Jane Stewart, then Jane says hey, Nault has the whole file, including training. There's a situation there we need to work through."      *     AP, by Mike Chambers-JUNEAU--When the Legislature returns Jan. 14, lawmakers will contend with a looming $1.1 billion deficit and an outgoing governor who has asked for an increase in state spending. (See our related stories.)   *   For those who requested but missed our CBC Yellowknife interview, you may download it in the Quick Reference column, second item down, courtesy CBC North.

1-2-02: Here's the prize for our 37,777th reader: a wonderful 2002 calendar celebrating Alyeska Pipeline Service Company's 25th anniversary (Photo).  CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR WINNER: GUENTER BOUMAN (Photo-left), OF B.C.  See here for details.     *     Alaska Representative Jim Whitaker, a gas reserves tax advocate whose recent newspaper column we linked for your information, will address Alliance members at the Anchorage Petroleum Club on 1-10; subject: "State's Comprehensive Budget & Fiscal Policy".     *     Petroleum News Alaska, by Steve Southerlin-Speakers at the Arctic Power annual meeting Dec.18 at the Captain Cook Hotel in Anchorage had a common theme: this annual meeting would be the last.     *        Congressional Quarterly-The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee is launching a sweeping investigation into the collapse of Enron Corp., the Houston-based energy company that filed for bankruptcy on Dec. 2 amid crashing stock prices and questions about its accounting practices and handling of employee retirement plans. Carl Levin, D-Mich., chairman of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, said the panel will issue "document subpoenas" to past and present Enron officers and board members and to Arthur Andersen, the company's auditing firm, within the next week.  "Something is rotten in the state of Enron," Levin said. Full committee Chairman Joseph I. Lieberman, D-Conn., said he will hold the first of many hearings on the matter on Jan. 24. "This is going to be a search for the truth, not a witch hunt," said Lieberman. Levin said his panel will focus on the "inside," meaning Enron's actions, while the full committee will take a broader role, looking at analysts and the  regulatory agencies.

1-1-02, New Years Day: For details about the "Second Annual Calgary Arctic Gas Symposium", with this year's theme: "Tapping Secure Supply for Growing Markets", refer to this page, The Canadian Institute.     *     Alaska's fiscal crisis: Anchorage Daily News-Time shifted dramatically against Alaska's leaders this fall when updated state revenue estimates showed the drain on the Constitutional Budget Reserve will be more than $900 million in the coming year. That means the CBR likely will evaporate in 2004, a year sooner than previously predicted. It means the day of reckoning is sooner, economic development is deterred -- because investment in a state that just won't put its fiscal house in order is less and less likely all the time -- and honest political leadership is more crucial than ever. Election year or not, the problem can no longer be put off.  See our recent stories.


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