The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued an administrative appeal decision Dec. 2 on ConocoPhillips Alaska’s appeal of the rejection of a permit for the Colville River 5 drill site development by the corps’ Alaska district engineer.
ConocoPhillips had asked that the permit decision be elevated to the division engineer, “but that request is without merit and is being denied,” the review officer, David Gesl, said in his decision.
Gesl found many of the stated reasons in ConocoPhillips’ request for appeal to be “without merit,” but said several aspects of the appeal “have merit and the decision is being remanded to the District Engineer for further consideration and final action.”
“We are still reviewing the decision and evaluating our options,” ConocoPhillips Alaska spokeswoman Natalie Lowman told Petroleum News in an e-mail earlier today.
The denial of permits came in a record of decision issued Feb. 5.
The CD-5 project would be the first development of oil from the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. ConocoPhillips proposed to build a drill site, CD-5, across the Nigliq Channel of the Colville River from existing Alpine field facilities. Crude oil would have been moved by pipeline supported on vertical support members across a bridge which would have been built across the Nigliq Channel. The project included a road from Alpine across the bridge to CD-5 on the west side of the channel.
The corps objected to the road and said there were alternatives with less environmental impact, including a roadless development with horizontal directional drilling under the Nigliq Channel to take the crude oil to Alpine via a line under the channel.
See more in the Dec. 12 edition of Petroleum News, available online to subscribers on Friday, Dec. 10 by 11 a.m.