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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; Bjørn 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 June 2009 news


Soon we will introduce a new website:  The new generation blog will replace this older one, though will remain available as a rich source of Arctic gas pipeline news, history, maps, presentations, photos and tens of thousands of links.  Thank you for your interest in our work to preserve and enhance archival information pertaining to Northern Gas Pipelines....  -dh

SPECIAL, OP-ED, ADN by Dave Harbour draft legislation circulating for comment as part of his five "Arctic Climate Change Initiatives." Sen. Mark Begich proposed adding a new layer of regulatory complexity to the already demanding federal regulatory system. The draft bill would establish, "an Arctic Regional Citizens' Advisory Council (RCAC) to encourage citizen engagement and oversight of the effective and safe development of Arctic energy resources."  Sound reasonable?  It's not.  Alaska has other advisory councils, created at different times for different purposes with different missions (See OPA 1990), as the Daily News noted in its Sunday editorial. But this particular advisory council, as proposed, could delay Alaska prosperity, worsen the existing regulatory structure and increase costs to consumers and taxpayers.  ...  Instead of creating another layer of complication, let's consider adopting legislation that expedites the permitting and legal processes, as Congress did in the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline Act of 2004. There, judicial review is limited and a federal coordinator is named to improve efficiency of the regulatory process.  ("Fair and Balanced": See ADN's Pro-RCAC editorial, 6-29-09, below.)

6-30-09.     Special Report.   Yesterday, the Alaska Black Chamber of Commerce met at the Westmark Anchorage Hotel to hear TransCanada spokesman Tony Palmer (NGP Photo) brief guests on the new partnership with ExxonMobil.  Palmer also announced the addition of a Point Thomson pipeline to the project and verification that the ‘open season’ process for filling pipeline capacity would begin next January and finish in July 2010.  Palmer said today that following ExxonMobil’s addition, spending through next July would be increased to $150 million.  He then described long term employment and contracting opportunities for Alaska businesses.  ABCC President, Marilyn Stewart - Richardson (NGP Photo) closed with an observation that, “We will be watching progress of the project closely.”     *    ADN by Erika Bolstad There are market forces, state and national politics and a host of environmental and regulatory hurdles -- some 22 federal agencies in the United States alone must sign off on an environmental impact statement before the project can move forward.  One small federal agency, the Office of the Federal Coordinator, is overseeing the effort. The office, headed by Drue Pearce (NGP Photo), an Alaskan who is based in Washington, D.C., has nine employees.      *       Solve Climate by Abby Schultz Where the natural gas from the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline will end up is a murky question tied up in a 30-year-old treaty, expansion of Canadian tar sands operations, and trends in natural gas supplies both in the United States and in Canada.  Environmentalists fear at least half of the relatively clean-burning Alaskan North Slope gas will end up fueling tar sands operations in Alberta, where the pipeline will end, instead of coming to the lower 48 states to replace carbon-intensive coal in power plants. The tar sands operations already consume about 20 percent of Canada’s natural gas, and they are expected to need as much as twice that by 2035.  Michael Brune of the Rainforest Action Network calls the pipeline "a stealth dirty oil mega-project … conceived by Big Oil.”  (add more......................... *  Texas for Sarah Palin Blog re: Drue Pearce Story..

6-29-09.  ADN Editorial.  U.S. Sen. Mark Begich (NGP Photo-l) wants to give Alaska's Arctic residents a formal way to offer their advice and perspective on decisions affecting the region. ... His idea (PDF Of Last Week's Draft Here) is modeled on the successful citizens' advisory council set up in the early 1990s for Prince William Sound after the Exxon Valdez oil spill. That council is a well-funded watchdog, keeping an eye on the oil pipeline and tanker operations to help avoid a repeat disaster.  Ideally, the Arctic citizens' council would speak to a broad range of issues, not just oil development.   (Yes, we have comments on this proposal and will provide them tomorrow.  -dh)  Alaska Gas Pipeline Blog In a nut shell: You can't invest $40 Billion in a long term project with variable or random taxes.     *    Today, TransCanada executive Tony Palmer (NGP Photo) will discuss his project at a meeting sponsored by the Alaska Black Chamber of Commerce.      *    Thomas A. Lamb Blog.  Bob McLeod, the investment and industry minister for the Northwest Territories, is meeting with top lawmakers in Washington, including U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, on a fact-finding mission on the Alaskan route.

6-26-09.  Alaska Standard, by Jeff Jones (NGP Photo, 4-14-09), Publisher, Alaska Journal of Commerce.  There’s an old proverb that says even a fool seems wise when he keeps his mouth shut.  Apparently this wisdom is lost on a couple of our state legislators, as they have spoken publicly to espouse their angst regarding ExxonMobil Corp. and TransCanada Corp. forming a partnership to move the gas pipeline project forward.  Should we laugh or cry? For instance, when state Rep. Bill Thomas, R-Haines, states in a press release, “I’m disappointed with the partnership. Exxon’s involvement will qualify them for some of the $500 million that Alaska will give to TransCanada to work on the line…”  Not wanting to be left out, during a House Resource Committee hearing in Anchorage on June 23, Rep. Bruce Edgmon, R-Dillingham was upset and so eloquently portrayed his displeasure when he retorted that Exxon the “largest corporation on the planet,” may now receive reimbursement funds via TransCanada due to their recent agreement.        *       Canadian Press by Lee-Anne Goodman.  "Everybody thinks we're here to talk about the oilsands, and everybody says our Mackenzie pipeline gas is just going to go to the oilsands anyway and we're saying no, that's not true," Bob McLeod, investment and industry minister for the Northwest Territories, said Wednesday.      *    High Beam Research.  ConocoPhillips Chairman and Chief Executive Jim Mulva is worried about natural gas. "I believe the world has a natural gas problem," Mulva volunteered in a recent interview with Energy Intelligence. "The world has a great deal of natural resources, but the lack of development of the resources to meet market demand is creating a tighter supply-demand situation. That's taking place not only in the US, but in Asia." Even with increased drilling, production in North America is at best holding flat. "Despite a great increase in money to drill, they are having a hard time arresting the decline of gas production in mature fields. That's onshore, offshore and in Canada."

6-25-09.  Reuters The government of Canada has not discussed providing loan guarantees for the Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline project, Environment Minister Jim Prentice said on Wednesday, and he would not say if they might be considered.     *    Fairbanks News Miner by Rena Delbridge Pipeline builders and producers reiterated their position Tuesday before legislators that favorable state fiscal terms will make or break plans to build a large-diameter natural gas pipeline from Alaska’s North Slope to an Alberta hub. ... But Alaska Revenue Commissioner Pat Galvin (NGP Photo-center, 9-17-07, with NEB Chairman Gaetan Caron-l and Author) said the state believes its fiscal terms are just fine for producers, although officials would be willing to listen to producer claims for change. ...  BP Alaska Vice President Claire Fitzpatrick said gas supplies, market volatility, pipeline costs and the state fiscal framework all involve risk. During an open season, companies will weigh those risks against potential gains and could commit gas if the scales balance favorably. ... Sen. Gene Therriault, R-North Pole, said the state is on the right track and should wait until terms and tariffs are more certain before negotiating. ...  Exxon Joint Interest Manager Marty Massey said the state could negotiate some sort of sliding scale without the numbers in hand.  ... Regardless of when the state starts talking with producers, Rep. Jay Ramras, R-Fairbanks, said Gov. Sarah Palin has created a Gordian knot that places her exactly where former Gov. Frank Murkowski was — negotiating tax deals with oil companies.  ...  Lawmakers also heard from Bud Fackrell (NGP Photo-r), CEO of Denali — The Alaska Gas Pipeline. He said every pipeline company that testified before the Legislature through months of hearings on AGIA said fiscal certainty is a must-have for producers.  ...  Rep. John Coghill, R-North Pole, was reassured when BP and ConocoPhillips said they regard the TransCanada and Exxon partnership as a positive move that will help refine open season terms.  *    Financial Post Bob McLeod, the Northwest Territories' Minister of Industry, Tourism, and Investment, kicks of a three-day fact-finding mission in Washington today, with hopes of sorting out precisely what the U.S. government is prepared to do to move the Alaska gas line ahead, and then take that information back to Ottawa. He has meetings scheduled with the U.S. Department of State; the Department of the Interior; members of the Senate and Congress; and others.  "We need a level playing field," he said. "If the American government is prepared to provide loan guarantees that exceed the cost of the [Alaska] pipeline, then....       *       The Fraser Institute Manitoba has dethroned both Saskatchewan and Alberta as the most attractive Canadian province or territory for oil and gas investment, according to an international survey of petroleum executives and managers released today by independent research organization the Fraser Institute. Saskatchewan, which was the top province in 2008, drops to the number two spot in Canada. But investors are most critical of Alberta, ranking the province as the least attractive among Canada provinces ranked for oil and gas investment. Aside from Manitoba and Saskatchewan, Alberta now also trails Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec....  (Comment:  One could logically conclude that with Alaska's greater remoteness to the North American pipeline grid and markets and with our more punishing tax burden the "Last Frontier" would rank behind Alberta as an attractive oil and gas investment climate.  This--combined with the coming, South Central Alaska energy crisis--is why NGP friends should be cautioned about risky, Alaska real estate investments in the foreseeable future.  -dh)     *      Maritime and EnergyA/S Norske Shell, operator of production license 326, has completed the drilling of wildcat well 6603/12-1. The well proved gas. The discovery is located 150 km northwest of the 6506/6-1 gas discovery (”Victoria”) in the northern Norwegian Sea.  The well was drilled in 1376 metres of water, which is the greatest water depth of any discovery made on the Norwegian shelf to date.

6-24-09.  ADN by Elizabeth Bluemink If TransCanada's open season fails, the company has "an obligation" under a state license awarded last year to keep soliciting gas from the producers every two years, said Tony Palmer (NGP Photo-r, 9-08), the company's vice president for Alaska development, during a House Resources Committee hearing in Anchorage on Tuesday.    *   KTUU VIDEO by Rhonda McBride (NGP Photo, 6-09).  Even for those who follow the oil industry, the Exxon and TransCanada deal is something of a mystery. Until recently Exxon had been an opponent of the state's roadmap to a gas line, yet it had not aligned itself with the competing Denali pipeline project.     *     Energy Pipeline News by Noel Griese Low natural gas prices don't pose a threat to the Alaska natural gas pipeline, a top official with TransCanada Corp. said on June 18.  "That's the nature of the gas business - the price goes up and the price goes down," said Tony Palmer, vice president for Alaska development with the Alberta-based company, in a meeting with the Juneau Empire's editorial staff.     *     Alaska Black Chamber of Commerce will host Tony Palmer, TransCanada, next Monday afternoon, Westmark Hotel, Anchorage, 2 p.m.  RSVP Only: (907)274-1201.    *     Scandinavian Oil and GasThe “oil-rich” Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador will take up a 7.8-percent stake in the slow-off-the-mark Hibernia South project in the North Atlantic off Eastern Canada, the provincial government and its oil company partners have confirmed.   ...   Talisman badger finds “elephant” oilfield.   *    PennEnergyOil and gas trade associations applauded the bill which emerged from the US Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on June 17 because it would open parts of the eastern Gulf of Mexico for leasing and development. But the measure contained several other elements which would directly affect the industry.  These included establishing a 30 million bbl refined products stockpile within the Strategic Petroleum Reserve; requiring an inventory of marine resources off the US coast, including seismic surveys on the Outer Continental Shelf; increasing federal guarantees for constructing a natural gas pipeline from Alaska to $30 billion; requiring Senate confirmation of nominees to be US Minerals Management Service director, and repealing offshore royalty and other incentives in the 2005 Energy Policy Act.    *    ReutersOttawa needs to step up and support the Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline in the same way Washington is propping up the Alaska gas effort with billions of dollars of loan guarantees if Canada ever wants to see it own Arctic gas aspirations come to fruition, argues the Northwest Territories.   *    FuelspaceOttawa needs to step up and support the Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline in the same way Washington is propping up the Alaska gas effort with billions of dollars of loan guarantees.    *    Smart BriefSen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, chided public officials in her home state, including a former governor who happens to be her father, to stop pointing fingers at one another over how well the state's natural gas pipeline has progressed. The pipeline has enough support in the White House and Congress to make it through the regulatory process, she said. Anchorage Daily News (Alaska) (free registration) (06/07)   *    Susan Stevenson blogSteve and I left Friday morning on an adventure that would begin about 90 miles from our house - at the start of the Dalton Hwy. The James W. Dalton Hwy (known informally as The Haul Road) is a 414-mile road that begins at the Elliott Highway, north of Fairbanks, and ends at Deadhorse near the Arctic Ocean and the Prudhoe Bay oil fields. It was built as a supply road to support the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System in 1974.

6-23-09.  All American Patriot At a time of increasing tension around the world, the U.S. should be doing everything possible to encourage domestic energy production, including continuing incentives for oil and gas development and building Alaska's natural gas pipeline. That was the message today from U.S. Senator Mark Begich (NGP Photo-r), speaking to the leaders of more than two dozen of the world's largest oil and gas companies.  Sen. Begich was the noon guest speaker at the American Petroleum Institute (API) Policy Committee meeting in Washington, D.C.       *    Oil and Gas Journal Tony Palmer (NGP Photo-r, 9-08, above), TransCanada vice-president of Alaska development, said the two companies will now jointly advance all aspects of the projects: technical, financial, and regulatory. The companies also will share costs, with TransCanada maintaining a majority interest in the project. Neither Palmer nor Marty Massey, ExxonMobil Production Co. US joint interest manager, would divulge specific percentages of ownership. The two addressed media in a conference call following the announcement.  ...  Among those attending the session were CEOs and other top officials of BP America, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Exxon Mobil Corp., Shell Oil Company, Chevron, Anadarko, Occidental Petroleum Company and others.   *     Calgary Herald by Dina O'MearaAbout 90 of the more than 1,000 service companies in BC will be represented at the 6th annual Energy Services BC trade show, running June 24 at the Telus Convention Centre downtown. The push in Calgary is vital for an industry suffering from the shadow of Alberta's well-established competitors, say insiders.

6-22-09.  Journal of Commerce by Tim Bradner The new alliance between ExxonMobil Corp. and TransCanada Corp. on a North Slope natural gas pipeline announced June 11 is a potential game-changer that has set up a real race between the new team and the rival Denali pipeline consortium owned by BP and ConocoPhillips.  ...  TransCanada Vice President Tony Palmer (NGP Photo-r, above, 9-08) said in briefings June 11 that he will be the chairman of the management committee for the project and a senior ExxonMobil manager will be in charge of day-to-day actions.     *   PNA.   The Mackenzie Producers Group controls 5.8 trillion cubic feet of proven reserves on the Mackenzie Delta and is the driving force behind the proposal that got pulled off the shelf almost a decade ago.    *     CBCAs delegates left Inuvik, N.W.T., Friday from the ninth annual Inuvik Petroleum Show, their concerns linger over the long wait for progress on the proposed Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline.  ...  "We hope the next time we see you, we have bigger and better news," O. D. Hansen of the Aboriginal Pipeline Group told delegates during the conference.  ... "There is a lot of work going on, and a lot of discussions between the proponents and the federal government on the matter of the fiscal framework and those efforts continue as we speak," said Randy Ottenbreit (NGP Photo-l, 4-02), Imperial's executive in charge of development of the Mackenzie pipeline.  ... "As we look forward in our region, we don't allow the pessimism to overtake the opportunities that we have," said Richard Nerysoo, head of the Gwich'in tribal council in Inuvik.  ... "The new hotel — we put in a big investment. And with so much uncertainDave Harbour - Inuvik - 2002ty, that's really down," said Russell Newmark of E. Gruben Transport, the hotel's majority owner. "If the pipeline doesn't go ahead it's going to be a real struggle."  ...  "So it's not totally that nothing is happening. There are things, but it's up to us to try to grab those opportunities for the Inuvialuit as best we can," said Nellie Cournoyea (NGP Photo, 4-02), head of the Inuvialuit Regional Corp.    *    Global TV, by Claudia Cattaneo (Older, but relevant Story, NGP Photo-below)) Calling the proposed Mackenzie Valley pipeline "a national embarrassment," the president of MGM Energy Corp. said Tuesday his company will stop drilling in the Arctic until a decision to construct the long-stalled project is made.   *  A plan to boost U.S. federal loans guarantees for an Alaska gas pipeline could raise yet another barrier to the construction of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline. The Minister of industry, tourism and investment for the Northwest Territories says that he plans to raise the issue with Federal Environment Minister Jim Prentice.  ***  (See our earlier comment. -dh)  ...  (Photo: Author-r at 2002 IPS)

6-19-09.  National Post by Claudia Cattaneo (NGP Photo).  Despite the glacial pace of progress of the proposed Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline, a new bright spot is emerging for energy development in Canada's North -- some of the world's largest companies are mounting in the Beaufort Sea the first deep-water exploration program in an Arctic environment.  The Mackenzie gas pipeline, years behind schedule due to regulatory delays, is threatened by new shale discoveries across North America that are faster and cheaper to bring to market.   See our earlier comment. -dh)   *    Calgary Herald by Dan Healing Alaskan Trish Jurica isn't picking a winner in the battle between TransCanada Corp. and a rival coalition of BP PLC and ConocoPhillips to build a multibillion-dollar natural gas pipeline to Alberta.  "I don't care who gets it. I just want it to happen," she said Wednesday, noting the 2,737-kilometre pipeline from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, to the B. C.-Alberta border will likely result in many spinoff benefits for her employer.  Jurica and other representatives of Anchorage-based Alaska Structures have set up camp this week in a white, insulated tent in the Stampede Park exhibition halls at the Gas and Oil Exposition in Calgary.  "This is a prototype," she said, referring to the 4.2-by 4.8-metre structure. "It's brand new, new insulation system, new windows . . . and good to minus 80 degrees."     *     Oilweek.   Northern businesses that have invested millions anticipating an energy boom in the Northwest Territories are getting tired of waiting for the pipeline parade.  It's been more than three years since a review panel began to consider the social and environmental effects of a proposed natural gas pipeline down the Mackenzie Valley.  Heavy construction equipment sits idle. A brand-new hotel in Inuvik is losing money.        *     CAODCIn 1949, the U.S.S.R. tested its first atomic bomb, NATO was formed, Indonesia became independent of Netherlands and Germany was formally divided into east and west.  Oh, and the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors was formed by six drilling contractors with interests in the nascent Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin.    *      Fairbanks News Miner by Rena DelbridgeThe Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority is pitching propane as a bridge fuel to ease the burden of high fuel costs in Interior Alaska until natural gas flows through a big line.      *      Calgary Herald.  The Energy Resources Conservation Board has signed a lease for eight floors of the new West Tower of Centennial Place in downtown Calgary.  ... The ERCB is an independent, quasi-judicial agency of the Government of Alberta, whose mandate is to regulate the safe, responsible, and efficient development of Alberta’s energy resources: oil, natural gas, oilsands, coal, and pipelines.      *     The National ... All across Russia, the prospect of global warming appears to present new opportunities: exploration of oil and gas fields in Siberia and construction of pipelines linking those fields with Europe and China would be cheaper....   *    Intro2ublogThe implications of Alaskan gas supplies reaching North American markets are potentially far-reaching, but much work remains to be done before a line is ready, perhaps sometime by 2018; at US$26 billion, the project would be the largest in U.S. history, so nothing less than full industry participation will be required to turn the dream into reality.

-18-09.  Calgary Herald by Shaun Polczner Federal Natural Resources Minister Lisa Raitt on Wednesday called for wholesale changes to speed the approvals process for new pipelines to carry oil and natural gas.  Speaking to the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association in Calgary, Raitt said merely tinkering with the regulatory framework is not enough to ensure that pipelines are built fast enough to meet surging demand for Canadian energy, both at home and in export markets such as the United States.  ... Association president Brenda Kenney said Raitt’s pronouncements are “very, very welcome indeed. That’s really great news.”  ...  The news is cold comfort for companies like Imperial Oil Ltd. that have spent almost a decade steering the proposed Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline through a review process involving the National Energy Board, aboriginal communities and the joint review panel.  Last year, the panel pushed back the release date for its final report until late this year, subsequently pushing back the in-service date for the link from the Arctic Ocean to 2014 — more than a decade after the project was revived in 2001.  “It (the delay) was a major disappointment,” conceded Imperial spokesman Pius Rolheiser, which is leading a consortium of producers including Shell Canada and ConocoPhillips proposing to build and operate the $16.2-billion line.   ...  In her remarks, Raitt described Mackenzie as “central to our future energy security and our status as an energy superpower.” She said the government also supports a second Alaska pipeline, which Raitt said is benefiting from a “single window” entry into the Canadian regulatory system  (THIS IS IMPORTANT NEWS FOR ALASKA, TOO.  See our earlier comment. -dh)    Also see, Interior News.  *     NWT by Premier Bob McLeod Previously, you have heard from my colleague, the Honourable Premier Floyd Roland, about our government’s concern for taking action now when it comes to developing the resources of the North. I share his opinion and would like to join him in sending out the message that the Government of Northwest Territories recognizes the sustainable development of these resources is essential to the long term security, self-sufficiency and social well being of our residents. We must not miss this window of opportunity; we must not miss this train that will otherwise stop at a different destination. Time waits for no one. As you all know, the Mackenzie Gas Project represents the largest single investment in the NWT’s history and can provide unprecedented opportunities to diversify and expand the NWT economy and contribute to a more robust and sustainable economic future for our Territory. It is critically important for us to see this Project built, so our children and grandchildren can continue to live and prosper in our beautiful land.     *        Forbes Investorpedia A round of applause greeted the announcement last week that Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) has decided to back a pipeline being built by TransCanada (NYSE: TRP) to bring natural gas from Alaska to the lower 48 states. But do we really need that gas given the plethora of shale plays all over the continental U.S.?     *     ADN by Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell.  Recently, a DC federal appeals court air-dropped a ruling on Alaska that effectively swept away our nation's current five-year offshore energy program, a full two years into its implementation. The court's decision threw into question at least 487 leases in Alaska's Chukchi Sea and 1,854 leases already issued in the Gulf of Mexico. This ruling jeopardizes thousands of Alaska jobs and billions in potential state and federal revenue.    *     KTVA U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today approved new national energy legislation that will provide a number of benefits to energy development in Alaska. The American Clean Energy Leadership Act of 2009, which passed the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee by a 15-to-8 vote, boosts the federal loan guarantee for a North Slope natural gas pipeline to Alaska and Lower 48 markets to $30 billion, plus inflation.

6-17-09.  Northern News Service by Guy Quenneville.  The NWT and Nunavut may have suffered some financial blows over the past year, but there is still an abundance of opportunity to be had as both territories brace for future projects that will stimulate economic growth and ensure top wages.  Aside from government spending and investment, the oil and gas and mining industries remain key drivers of the Northern economy.  The oil and gas industry continues to wait for the Joint Review Panel's decision on the Mackenzie Gas Project, which is now expected in December.    *    Scandinavian Oil and Gas Coverage of Exxon - TransCanada Union Town Hall Blog.  Financial Post.   *     Houston Chronicle (AP).  Representatives from Exxon Mobil Corp. and TransCanada will update Alaska lawmakers on their recent agreement to build a natural gas pipeline from the North Slope across Canada, feeding Midwestern markets.  Officials from the two companies will meet Tuesday (June 23) in a joint meeting with the Senate Resources and Energy committees at the Anchorage Legislative Information Office.     *     KTUU by Rhonda McBride.   "The propane is part of the huge gas reserve at Prudhoe Bay on the North Slope," said ANGDA director Harold Heinze. "We've always known it was there. It didn't warrant separately tapping it, we've been waiting for the big pipeline to come and propane would move as part of the natural gas."  But the record fuel prices that hit the Interior and much of rural Alaska last winter may have moved up the time table for propane.  "We're not talking about waiting for a pipeline to be built," said ANGDA consultant Mary Ann Pease. "We're talking about a resource that's available today on the North Slope."     *     Canadian Press.  TransCanada Corp. (TSX:TRP) and ExxonMobil Corp.'s (NYSE: XOM) collaboration on a $26 billion US natural gas pipeline in Alaska is a "wake-up call" for a stagnant project in the Northwest Territories, a backer of the Mackenzie Gas Project said yesterday.  "They're gaining on us by leaps and bounds here," said Fred Carmichael, chairperson of the Aboriginal Pipeline Group, which holds a one-third ownership stake in the Mackenzie Project.  "That announcement should serve as a wake-up call for the Mackenzie project."   (See our earlier article.)   *    House Majoritythe joint committee hearing originally scheduled for Monday, June 15 has been rescheduled to Tuesday, June 23 in Anchorage to hear from ExxonMobil Corp. and TransCanada Corp. on their planned partnership to build the AGIA natural gas pipeline.

6-16-09.  Oil and Gas Financial Journal by Roger Marks (Photo-r).    In attempt to bring its vast reserves of North Slope natural gas to market, the State of Alaska has provided inducements that may not only assure the project’s failure, it may ultimately cost the state nearly $2.5 billion. ... If only the failure of AGIA itself were the end of it, the loss of $500 million to the public treasury might only be deemed a “considerable” calamity. The ultimate public policy failure will not be the failure of AGIA. It will be the triple damages: the “poison pill” that endures. AGIA leaves the state no room for risk if it does not work. It is not unimaginable that this is what motivated TransCanada to participate: laying out $125 million for the chance to recoup $1.875 billion.  So the scenarios are either TransCanada cashes in on that bet, or the state is powerless to fiscally accommodate another project, degrading the landscape for getting any gas pipeline. Either way, there is a dreadful cost to the public.   (Note: this retired, senior economist for the Alaska's Revenue Department offers unique insight into the State's revised oil and gas tax structure.  -dh)       *       Canwest News Service, by Jason Feket.  Western premiers and U.S. governors on Sunday hailed their push to develop a cross-border Western Energy Corridor that will be the largest on the planet and one that  develops both non-renewable and clean-energy options.  Spearheaded by Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall and Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer, the initiative could open new markets to the three Prairie provinces, which are all major energy producers in both renewables and fossil fuels.  Wall, Alberta’s Ed Stelmach and Manitoba’s Gary Doer — all in Park City, Utah for the Western Governors’ Association annual conference — met Sunday with state political leaders to explore the potential for a broader energy relationship.

6-15-09.   FNM by Rena Delbridge.  As a high school student in Nenana, Bear Ketzler worked a couple summers for a business supplying propane to customers along the river.  The clean-burning fuel was the power of choice for cooking in villages, before the years of diesel tank farms and in a place where electricity is expensive when its available.  Now the city manager of Tanana, Ketzler and his community are testing propane as a possible alternative fuel for widespread distribution in rural Alaska, in tandem with the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority.       *      Alaska Dispatch by Andrew Halcro (NGP Photo-l).  Exxon comes along at a time when TransCanada needed a friend with deep pockets and the Palin administration needed some positive news to tell about AGIA.     *       Financial Post.  Abundant cheap supplies of natural gas from new shale deposits, plus growing imports of liquefied natural gas flowing into the United States, push back by 15 years the need for Arctic gas and make it difficult for higher-cost gas from Western Canada to compete, says pipeline executive Steve Letwin.  ... Enbridge will make a pitch to be part of the Denali project, an Alaska pipeline proposed by another group, BP PLC and ConocoPhillips, Mr. Letwin said, just to stay in the game, but "it's going to be a long game."     *     More on Exxon's joining the TransCanada ANS gas pipeline project: Alaska Journal of Commerce by Tim Bradner (NGP Photo-r).     *     CKTB, by Lauren Krugel, THE CANADIAN PRESS.  With a US$26-billion pipeline planned for Alaska hitting an important milestone, questions have been raised over whether the Mackenzie Gas Project in the Northwest Territories will ever be needed to ship Arctic natural gas south.     *     Journal of Commerce by Tim Bradner (NGP Photo).  It's a tough thing to say, but the days will start getting shorter soon and January is only six months away. The usual midwinter cold snap is almost surely in the cards, and the gas distribution system serving consumers and local electric utilities is likely to be strained once again.  See other coverage....

6-12-09.  Houston Chronicle by Tom Fowler.  Exxon Mobil Corp.’s plan to work with TransCanada on a massive natural gas pipeline from the North Slope of Alaska is a significant setback for a competing project by ConocoPhillips and BP, an energy policy analyst said Thursday.     *       CBC News.  TransCanada Corporation said Thursday it has struck a deal with ExxonMobil to develop an Alaska gas pipeline at an initial projected cost of $26 billion US. ...  "TransCanada's Alaska pipeline project will connect Alaska's natural gas resource to new markets," said Hal Kvisle, TransCanada president and chief executive officer.  *   Hear yesterday's AGIA press conference, yesterday.     *     Globe and Mail by David Ebner.  Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM-N73.76-0.29-0.39%) has joined forces with TransCanada Corp. (TRP-T34.080.401.19%) on its $26-billion (U.S.) natural gas pipeline from Alaska to Alberta, a move that jeopardizes the Mackenzie Valley gas project vital to the development of Canada's north.   (Commentary.  What "jeopardizes" the Mackenzie project is the Gordian knot of Canadian aboriginal, bureaucratic and legal hurtles that have delayed a perfectly good project.   We would urge journalists not to blame Exxon whose Canadian sister, Imperial, has worked diligently to orchestrate a successful pipeline project.  Imperial's Randy Ottenbreit, in particular, merits our respect.  Likewise, the Inuvialuit, Gwich'in, and Sahtu leadership have been stalwart, as have Fred Carmichael (NGP Photo-l), Nellie Courtenay and Bob Reid of the Aboriginal Pipeline Group--whose realistic goal was to have gas flowing by next year.  The National Energy Board and Minister Jim Prentice have faithfully executed their responsibilities, tirelessly.  No, any blame for Mackenzie delay belongs not at the footsteps of industry or general government or a blameless Alaskan project. Rather, look into the chaotic, self-centered regulatory fiefdoms and aboriginal hold-outs that create seemingly endless objections, hearings and meetings in a quixotic quest for absolute consensus before a project can exit the birth canal.   It is the Berger Inquiry legacy: a ghostly apparition cloaked in good intentions covering a decaying, disintegrating economic skeleton that could have been a lighthouse of leadership and prosperity in the the 21st Century North.  It now appears that the Berger legacy could prevent still another generation from unshackling itself from Ottawa dependency and the pitiful, entitlement culture.  Have the extreme environmental activists and aboriginal obstructionists won the prize of economic dependency and poverty and dead-end career opportunities for the Children of the North?  Is the window of opportunity closed now for another generation, or, will the sheer determination of leaders like Prentice, Reid, Carmichael, Courtenay and Ottenbreit resuscitate a project for this generation?  Or does all of this delay just allow a wiser, future generation to build the most economic of all projects: the single, Arctic gas project efficiently transporting Alaskan and Canadian natural gas to Canadian and American markets?     -dh)

6-11-09.  Platt's.  ExxonMobil Corp. is in discussions with TransCanada Corp. over the Houston-based company's possible involvement in TransCanada's plan to build a $30 billion-plus Alaska natural gas pipeline, industry and state government sources said Thursday. (See the Alaska Dispatch and KTVA stories.)     *    The Heat Zone Republicans in Congress have tended to support the expansion of offshore drilling in American waters, while Democrats have traditionally opposed it. As reported recently on The Heat Zone, Congress allowed an 18-year old general moratorium on offshore drilling to expire last year, and coastal reserves in the Gulf of Mexico were re-opened as well.  There are still, however, a number of obstacles to the renewal of widespread offshore drilling, and how things will progress from here is a hot topic in Congress. Republicans are still pushing for more and faster domestic oil and gas development, while Democrats, although they’ve eased their opposition, want bigger price tags and new rules imposed on prospective drillers.

6-10-09.  Houston Chronicle by Tom Fowler and Kristen Hays.  Exxon Mobil is in discussions with TransCanada to help it build a massive pipeline to move natural gas from the North Slope of Alaska to U.S. markets, according to a source familiar with the deal. The move could undermine a competing effort by ConocoPhillips and BP.   ...  Scott Jepsen, spokesman for Denali, the joint venture of Houston-based ConocoPhillips and London-based BP, said Denali officials had no comment because they hadn’t seen an announcement about an alliance between Exxon and TransCanada and couldn’t speculate on what it might be.   *   ADN by Sean Cockerham.  ... "I've heard the rumor, I don't know anything as far an any truth to it or not," said state House speaker Mike Chenault, a Republican from Nikiski, Chenault said that it could be true, since Gov. Sarah Palin told Sean Hannity on Fox News that "some really good, exciting news" was coming soon.  Anchorage Rep. Mike Hawker said he doesn't have any confirmation either but heard a rumor an announcement could come as soon as Thursday morning.    *     KTUU by Rhonda McBride.  Gov. Sarah Palin told Fox News she should have "exciting news" next week about the natural gas pipeline.  Her remarks have fueled speculation that TransCanada, the company that won the state permit to build the pipeline, has reached an agreement with ExxonMobil.

SPECIAL............Anchorage Press by Eric Lidji (NGP Photo)  Comment: Please read this article if you have any interest at all in South Central Alaska.  As usual, Eric has done his homework.  -dh  Just to get your attention, here’s the worst-case scenario: A mid-winter cold snap hits Southcentral Alaska, bringing temperatures of 20 below zero. People from the Matanuska Valley to the Kenai Peninsula turn up their heat in unison, sucking natural gas from the Enstar Natural Gas Co. distribution grid buried beneath the city streets. This network is fed by transmission lines leading back to wells that pump natural gas from underground reservoirs across Cook Inlet. As more people turn up the heat, engineers search for additional molecules of natural gas to manage the increased demand. But the cold doesn’t let up. Then, a compressor trips at one of the major gas fields, and the pressure in the pipeline system drops below the threshold needed for making electricity. So the lights go out. System operators worry the drop in pressure allowed air to get into the grid, and federal regulations require them to stop delivering to customers. So the heat goes off. ...  Dave Harbour, a former RCA commissioner who wanted to approve the 2005 APL-5 contract and whose term expired before the RCA began considering the newer APL-6 contracts. Over the past six months, Harbour has spoken publicly several times about the gas situation in Cook Inlet, including a February 23, 2009 speech before a group of local energy economists where he praised the decision to approve the 2001 contract, but criticized the recent rejections. “The 2001 gas supply agreement with Union Oil Company was properly approved by a wiser commission concerned about price and near and long term supply for citizens,” Harbour said. “In their more recent APL-5 and APL-6 decisions, the majority of Commissioners have mistakenly concluded that their change in regulatory policy should result in an immediate improvement in prices and not adversely affect private investment decisions and results.”  ...  “We need gas sooner rather than later,” Colleen Starring, Enstar’s regional vice president, told an industry group in May 2008. “If there were another discovery in the Inlet that’s great, but we can’t wait for that to happen.”       *     PNA by Kristen Nelson.  The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has revised in part and confirmed in part its requirements for Kenai LNG facility reporting.   *   PNA.  A new management plan for the Norwegian Sea bans drilling in several coastal areas but also opens some new Arctic areas for drilling, including the waters around Jan Mayen Island. The Norwegian government’s announcement of the plan raised the hackles of environmental groups such as the Bellona Foundation that oppose offshore drilling in the Arctic.  “The management plan is a starting point for robust, good and balanced management of the Norwegian Sea,” Environment Minister Erik Solheim said at a press conference May 8.  “The Norwegian Sea will be the cornerstone of the Norwegian petroleum industry in the years to come,” Petroleum and Energy Minister Terje Riis-Johansen said.    *    MORE COMING AFTER 6-11-09.

6-4-09.     Comment: Yesterday, World Trade Center Alaska Executive Director Greg Wolf (NGP Photo-r, 6-3-09) introduced former Alaska State House of Representatives Majority Leader Ralph Samuels (NGP Photo-l, 6-3-09) to address the subject: "Crusin' For A Brusin'".  He reviewed the 2006 voter initiative which levied on certain--but not all--cruise ship passenger lines a $50 head tax and a bevy of weighty regulations.  While Samuels was ever the tactful yet effective speaker, one can conclude only after studying the initiative and its effects that a great injustice has been done the cruise ship industry and state attempts to commit economic suicide in that sector are still underway.  (Check back for audio).  Samuels is now Vice President of Government & Community Relations for Holland America Line.  At the end of his presentation we asked his opinion on state oil and gas policy, particularly those issues pertaining to the North Slope and to the diminishing, deliverable Cook Inlet gas supplies.  You'll not want to miss his answer and my guess is that you will likewise conclude that Alaska is infected with economic immaturity that can be seen as clearly in energy tax and policy matters as in cruise ship tax and regulatory policy.  "I don't think a bullet line goes unless the State wants to flat out subsidize it."   We have reached the same conclusion which ushers forth a question for State leaders: if several billion dollars of public monies build a "bullet pipeline" from the ANS to Cook Inlet to make the cost of gas acceptable to South Central Alaska residents, what pressures will citizens in other parts of the state put on lawmakers for pay-offs in the name of equality?   Here's a new principle to ponder: huge government involvement discourages private involvement.  Who wants to compete with government?  If government is willing to get involved and change the rules of the game, the game becomes less predictable...too unpredictable for prudent investors.  Here's another principle: if leaders have faith in the private sector, support it and at times give it incentives, that invisible hand Adam Smith described can activate itself to solve the complex web of problems too complex for simplification at the political level.  If private parties know government will support and not compete with them, some could explore that very realistic possibility of South Central Alaska LNG imports.  At today's natural gas/LNG prices such a temporary solution to critical shortfalls in deliverability during peak winter periods would be eminently more sensible and would not through into motion the multi-billion dollar raid on dwindling state savings accounts to subsidize a more expensive ANS gas supply option.  Sometimes elected leaders try to do too much.      -dh       *     Yesterday, the State released letter from state revenue and natural resources commissioners to Senator Mark Begich (NGP Photo, 4-09).  "We were surprised and dismayed to read the comments you delivered at the World Trade Center Alaska luncheon concerning progress on the Alaska gas pipeline project. We must believe that you are uninformed about the current situation in Alaska regarding this project. The Alaska gas pipeline will be the largest and most complex private sector project in the history of North America. The lead time required to execute the project successfully is measured in years, not days or months. However, every day the Alaska gas pipeline project is making significant progress toward becoming a reality.  That progress is the result of bipartisan actions taken in Congress and the Alaska State Legislature in the past—actions that must continue to be bipartisan into the future."  KTUU story.  ...more....  Comment:  "Oh, dear....   -dh"     *      Caledonia Courier, by Rick Playfair.  “People’s safety and environmental protection are our highest priorities,” Steve Greenaway, Vice President of Public and Government Affairs for Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines said. “Over our long history operating thousands of miles of pipelines, Enbridge has had an excellent record of safe, reliable pipeline operations. While no transportation system is completely risk-free, ruptures on modern steel pipelines are extremely rare.

6-3-09.  State Press Release.  Yesterday, Governor Sarah Palin (NGP Photo, 5-09) addressed a Point Thompson appreciation luncheon.  Point Thompson will eventually provide about 1/3 of the input for an ANS gas pipeline.     *     Reuters by Jeffery Jones.   The shifting outlook for North American natural gas supply as gas from shale deposits is developed will hinder plans to tap reserves in the Far North, the president of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers said on Tuesday.    ...  "You have to acknowledge the very different supply outlook in North America for gas has got to be a factor in, certainly, the timing at least of those (Arctic) projects," CAPP President David Collyer told the Reuters Global Energy Summit.  The multibillion-dollar Alaska and Mackenzie Valley gas pipelines remain in the planning stages amid regulatory delays and high costs.      *      Calgary Herald by Dan Healing.  Higher oil prices translate directly into higher revenue for oilsands companies -- lower natural gas prices mean lower costs for the industry that can burn through a lot of gas for each barrel produced.     *     Reuters U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said on Monday he believes technology can solve environmental problems associated with Canada's oil sands and that the huge nearby resource contributes to U.S. energy security.  Chu told the Reuters Global Energy Summit that the balance between the environmental impact from the huge energy resource in northern Alberta and its importance to U.S. energy supply is a complicated one that will require solutions from the industry.        *         Calgary Herald also by Dan Healing.  A proposed $3-billion liquefied natural gas export terminal at Kitimat, B.C., has signed its second tentative deal with an Asian customer, but has yet to nail down any gas suppliers.  Kitimat LNG Inc. announced Monday it has signed a memorandum of understanding with government-owned Korea Gas Corp., or Kogas, under which it will buy up to 40 per cent of output--about 1.8 million tonnes per year-- and potentially take an equity stake in the project.  The deal is similar to one inked with Japan's Mitsubishi Corp. in January for up to 1.4 million tonnes per year.  Neither has been finalized, said Rosemary Boulton, president of Kitimat LNG, although when it was announced, the Mitsubishi deal was expected to close by March 31. ...  Greg Stringham, a vice-president with the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, said the tentative deals are a good sign, noting many LNG export terminals have been pursued in Canada over several decades, but none are currently operating.

6-2-09.  FNM.  Two local residents — Kathryn K. Lamal and Brian Rogers (NGP Photo, 2-5-09) — were appointed to the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority on Friday by Gov. Sarah Palin.  The authority, led by a seven-member board of directors, was created by a statewide voter initiative in 2002. Its mission is to develop a natural gas pipeline from the North Slope to Prince William Sound or Cook Inlet.    (Note: Kathryn and Brian have a tough assignment.  They will bring their valuable Golden Valley Electric Association and University of Alaska experiences to the table and participate in many meetings.    ANGDA's mission has evolved more into a role of facilitating the building of a spur line to South Central Alaska, intersecting with a future mainline tracing through Fairbanks.  Officially, ANGDA is focused on, "...getting North Slope natural gas to Alaskan communities as well as identifying feasible LNG opportunities for Alaska."  The conundrums, however, are many.  ANGDA doesn't have the Governor's or Legislature's support for building a mainline (i.e., one of the challenges of government projects is responding to multiple oversight interests who, unlike private owners, have no 'skin in the game'.).  One can't build a spur line from Fairbanks until a Mainline from Prudhoe is constructed.  If that is not until 2018, say, how's South Central Alaska going to access ANS gas as it runs out of Cook Inlet gas?  If Enstar builds a bullet line to the North Slope after contracting with some unknown entity for some unknown gas supply, that, of course will make the greater part of ANGDA's mission moot.  Then there is the question of how South Central Alaska gas ratepayers would feel about paying a pricey tariff on a long bullet line after a Main Line is built which would have offered a cheaper ANS-Fairbanks tariff?  How could the Regulatory Commission of Alaska possibly rationalize allowing any new gas supply for South Central Alaska at a price higher than it has permitted Enstar during gas supply agreement proceedings over the last two years?  Or will the RCA reconsider the new precedent it has established?  Why should South Central Alaskans be interested in Alaska North Slope gas when a more immediately available supply of cheaper gas could exist via a new LNG IMPORT project?  Isn't it possible that foreign gas from Pacific Rim tidewater locations could be cheaper than ANS gas transported to Anchorage over 800 pipeline miles?  Anyway, for those who love to practice the art of discourse, a tour of duty on the ANGDA board would be a pursuit worthy of a distinguished chancellor and a dedicated utility executive.  Ultimately, those who orchestrate such government projects as the Matanuska Maid Dairy, Alaska Seafood International and Federal Government ownership of General Motors have found or will find that no number of good intentions or committee meetings can replace the 'silent hand' of free enterprise.  It seems we are destined to never learn that message, so determined are we to experience that message over and over again, from generation to generation.     -dh)     *    (NOTE: The Alberta Oil Magazine story below is the most significant gas pipeline news in months, also featuring intense government involvement in that other large gas pipeline project across the border.  Bob Reid, a man of indisputable integrity and gas pipeline savvy, is not optimistic about the Mackenzie project based on what I as an outsider may simplistically refer to as bureaucratic delays.  Please read the article.  When you do, you may note that several reasons for Bob's pessimism stem from competition from other gas sources and competition from Alaska.  His distinct lack of optimism in this article flows from another concern we have in common: that of bureaucratic delay of projects.  I'll go a step further than he did and suggest these delays are largely caused by a minority of local stakeholders emboldened and financed by large, outside, environmental, special interests.  Those interests have shown disdain for the rule of law: seeking to discourage, delay then derail projects before the permitting process is begun...or in other cases, complete.  -dh) 

6-1-09.  Alberta Oil Magazine, by Gordon Jaremko.  Bob Reid (NGP Photo-l, w/author, 11-30-01) came out of retirement from a 33-year career with TransCanada PipeLines Ltd. to become president of the Aboriginal Pipeline Group. This coalition of Northwest Territories native communities owns one-third of the proposed Mackenzie Valley Pipeline, which is about half of the $16-billion Mackenzie Gas Project that also includes new Arctic production installations.  Alberta Oil: What is the state of the northern pipeline project?  Bob Reid: This is the year natural gas from the Mackenzie Delta was originally scheduled to flow when the regulatory applications were filed in 2004. Don’t hold your breath.           *         This coming Friday, June 5, reminds us that the Alaska State Senate Resources Committee (Senator Lesil McGuire - Senator Bill Wielechowski, Co-Chairs) will hear presentations from several industry representatives and state agency officials at the Anchorage Legislative Information Office.  The meeting will focus on Cook Inlet natural gas production.  Although the committee will not have time to hear public testimony, the Alliance encourages members and friends to attend this meeting or watch it on Gavel to Gavel.  Please see the draft agenda below, or click here for more information.  See our earlier stories here and here.     *     Alaska Gas Pipeline Blog Another sign of progress on by the Denali Pipeline team - This week the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Office of Energy Projects selected Argonne National Laboratory (Argonne) as the third-party contractor to assist the FERC staff in preparing the environmental impact statement for the Denali Pipeline Project.  The Third Party program helps FERC by providing resources at the expense of the applicant.       *      FNM, by Larry Wood Alaska has just been relegated to the back burner where any natural gas pipeline to the Lower 48 is concerned. Gov. Sarah Palin’s administration and its predecessors bet the bank on a 4.5 billion cubic-foot-per-day pipeline that will never be built. The Alaska Gasline Inducement Act is now a dead end.  What happened?

5-30&31-09 weekend news.   Alaska Gas Pipeline Blog.  S. 774 would increase the federal loan guarantees for the Alaska Gas Pipeline. The bill is in the Senate Finance Committee. It's worth keeping an eye on. The bill is sponsored by Sen. Byron Dorgan [D-ND] and would increase the Pipeline loan guarantee from $18 billion to $30 billion.       *       Canadian Press by Bill Weber.   The Canadian North needs its own free-trade agreement, says the editor of a new book on Arctic policy released this weekend.  Prominent economist Tom Courchene argues the myriad of boards, agencies and self-government councils created by treaty settlements have to learn to work together and sacrifice some of their individual power for the good of the region if northern development is to reach its potential.  ... The Mackenzie Valley gas pipeline proposal has also been delayed in the regulatory process, due in part to legal tangles over how different aboriginal groups should be represented at public hearings.         *       PNA.  CH2M Hill said May 8 that it had been named employer of the year by the State of Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development. The award was presented at the annual Building Alaska’s Future Apprenticeship Conference. CH2M Hill won the award in the electrical trade category for its innovative internship program.  “I think this is a tremendous award that recognizes what the people of various communities can achieve if given a chance and to the individuals at CH2M Hill who are committed to help them reach their goals of learning new skill sets in their employment efforts,“ said Charles O’Donnell, president and general manager of CH2M Hill Alaska. (Comment:  see our story on CH2M Hill's earlier accolade.  This company has never been unknown to Alaskans, but when it took over VECO assets and operations--along with a competent employee and loyal client base--it carefully coordinated those assets into what has become one of the most respected companies in Alaska and the country.  -dh)


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