August 30, 2005 --- Vol. 11, No. 70August 2005

Forest applies to re-enter old west-side Gulf well

Forest Oil Corp. has applied to re-enter an old Gulf well on the west side of Cook Inlet, the Alaska Department of Natural Resources said Aug. 29.

The Middle Lake Unit No. 1 was drilled by Gulf Oil Corp. in 1969, looking for oil, and plugged and abandoned as a dry hole.

Middle Lake Unit No. 1 is on an existing drill site some eight-tenths of a mile inside the eastern boundary of the Susitna Flats State Game Refuge, east of the Little Susitna River.

Forest told the state that Middle Lake “is being evaluated primarily as a natural gas development.”

Forest said in its plan of operations that it will clean out the existing well bore at the Middle Lake Unit well, drill new hole below the 9 5/8-inch casing to an estimated 6,500 feet and test the well for natural gas.

Should the well prove commercially viable, Forest said it would initiate plans for production.

RCA schedules hearing on ANGDA request

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska has scheduled a public hearing Sept. 8 to hear comments on a proposal by the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority that two sections of statute governing a North Slope gas pipeline be repealed. It will accept written comments through Sept. 19, including comments in response to oral testimony at the Sept. 8 hearing.

The repeal would require legislative action, but the commission could recommend such an action to the Legislature, if it agrees with the ANGDA proposal after hearing public comment.

The commission discussed the request at an Aug. 24 public meeting and opened docket P-05-10 for public comment. ANGDA has requested repeal of AS 42.06.240(f) and AS 42.06.370(c). AS 42.06.240(f) concerns the in-state natural gas transportation capacity of an Alaska natural gas pipeline.

AS 42.06.370(c) requires that intrastate rates for a North Slope natural gas pipeline “shall be designed as if that portion of the North Slope natural gas pipeline were a public utility regulated under the provisions of AS 42.05 (the state utility act).”

Editor’s note: See stories in Sept. 4 issue of Petroleum News.

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