July 05, 2000 --- Vol. 6, No. 27July 2000

June North Slope production down 5 percent from May

Alaska North Slope liquids production averaged 948,672 barrels a day in June, down 5 percent from an average 998,943 barrels a day in May.

The steepest decline was at Prudhoe Bay, which averaged 533,498 barrels a day in June, down 6.22 percent (35,368 barrels a day) from a May average of 568,866 barrels a day. Kuparuk River (including Tarn and Tabasco), which averaged 223,789 barrels a day in June, was down 4.45 percent (10,434 barrels a day) from a May average of 234,223 barrels a day.

June production also declined at the Lisburne production center (which processes crude oil from Lisburne, Point McIntyre and Niakuk), with a June average production of 99,344 barrels a day, down 3.02 percent (3,090 barrels a day) from a May average of 102,434 barrels a day, and at Milne Point, which averaged 52,486 barrels a day in June, down 3.43 percent (1,864 barrels a day) from a May average of 54,350 barrels a day.

The only increase in June production was at Endicott (including Eider and Badami), where an average of 39,555 barrels a day was a 1.24 percent (485 barrels a day) increase over a May average of 39,070 barrels a day.

Cook Inlet production for June averaged 28,640 barrels, down 2.26 percent from a May average of 29,302 barrels a day. Prudhoe Bay natural gas liquids (included in the Prudhoe Bay total above) averaged 45,090 barrels a day, down 15.92 percent from a May average of 29,302 barrels a day.

AOGCC sets first quarter 2001 regulatory cost charges

At a public meeting July 5, the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission set the regulatory cost charges operators will be billed for the first quarter of the fiscal year.

BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc., as the new operator of the entire Prudhoe Bay field, as well as Milne Point and Badami, had the largest charge, some 78 percent of the total, just over half a million dollars. Phillips Alaska -- which operates the Kuparuk River field (Tarn, Tabasco, West Sak), had 18 percent of the total, some $110,000. The commission listed Phillips Petroleum separately, as the operator of the North Cook Inlet gas field, for a charge of $2,200. Even the North Slope Borough, which operates gas fields which supply fuel for Barrow, was on the list, for $63.

Unocal, largest of the Cook Inlet operators, accounted for almost 3.5 percent of the total, some $22,000. Other Cook Inlet operators -- Cross Timbers, Marathon and Forcenergy -- combined account for less than half a percent of the state's total production and had a combined regulatory cost charge of less than $2,500.

The billing is sent to field operators, who then apportion the amounts out according to field ownership.

The Legislature approves a budget for the AOGCC. From that amount, $2.86 million for fiscal year 2001 which began July 1, the commission subtracts an estimated amount for charges for drilling permits ($10,000 for fiscal year 2001), any remaining monies from the previous year ($190,000 estimated from fiscal year 2000 because of positions which were not filled for the entire fiscal year) and a $100,000 federal grant.

That leaves an estimated $2.56 million to be apportioned out to field operators in four quarterly installments. The first quarter is estimated and final adjustments are made before bills are sent out for the second quarter.

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