April 03, 1998 --- Vol. 4, No. 16April 1998

BP term prices down for fifth month

BP America's April term price for Alaska North Slope crude is $12.23 a barrel, down $1.12 (9.16 percent) from the March term price of $13.35 a barrel - the fifth monthly decline since the term price began to drop in December. This is the lowest BP's term price has been since February 1994 when it stood at $11.65 a barrel.

The year-to-date average for the term price is $14.19 a barrel, down 35.71 percent from an average of $22.07 a barrel for the comparable period in 1997.

For the state's current fiscal year, the term price average is $16.55 a barrel, down 20.7 percent from the $20.87 a barrel term price average for the last fiscal year.

BP is the largest producer of ANS crude and the only producer to release a term price.

Production down in March

March daily North Slope production averaged 1.250 million barrels a day, continuing below the 1.325 million barrels a day forecast by the Department of Revenue last fall. A new production forecast will be available Friday.

Contributing to the decline were higher than average North Slope temperatures and two days of unplanned operational upsets at the Lisburne production center.

The historical average March temperature at pump station no. 1 is -20 F while the average temperature this March was a positive 2.9 F, economist Denise Hawes of Revenue's division of oil and gas audit told PNA.

BP to test DIU exploratory well

BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. applied to the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission March 23 to production test an undefined oil pool in the Duck Island unit off Alaska's North Slope.

The DIU 2-56/EI-01A exploratory oil well would be perforated and tested in an interval that is closer than 500 feet from a quarter section line, requiring commission approval.

The well was drilled from the main production island at Endicott to a bottomhole location to the northwest. The original exploration well was permitted in February and a sidetrack in March. Production testing is being requested for the sidetrack.

The Endicott field was discovered in 1978. Most production is from the Kekiktuk formation Endicott oil pool at 10,000 feet subsea. Commission figures for February show 55 Endicott pool completions producing 1.48 million barrels of crude for the month. Two Ivishak pool completions accounted for 17,056 barrels in February. Production is a combination of flowing and gas lift. Cumulative crude production from the field through February was 361 million barrels. The Department of Natural Resources 1997 Historical and Projected Oil and Gas Consumption report showed an estimated 258 million barrels of recoverable reserves remaining at Endicott.

BP owns approximately 60 percent of Endicott. Major partners include Exxon, about 20 percent and Amoco and Unocal, about 10 percent each.

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