July 29, 2010 --- Vol. 16, No. 66July 2010

Buccaneer applies for two Cook Inlet units

Buccaneer Alaska LLC has applied to form two units in Cook Inlet, the Southern Cross unit and the Northwest Cook Inlet unit.

The company said in a July 27 release that it is working on permitting and aims to accelerate time to first production from its Cook Inlet acreage, possibly through access to an existing platform at the Southern Cross acreage and access to nearby infrastructure at North Cook Inlet.

Buccaneer, a subsidiary of Sydney, Australia-based Buccaneer Energy, began acquiring leases in Cook Inlet early this year with a purchase of Stellar Oil and Gas acreage; it has since acquired acreage from other companies and at the state’s Cook Inlet areawide oil and gas lease sale in May.

Southern Cross, which Buccaneer initially called North Middle Ground Shoal, includes five leases in Cook Inlet west of the producing South Granite Point unit, operated by Chevron subsidiary Union Oil Company of California, and the Kitchen Lights unit where exploration drilling is proposed by operator Escopeta.

Northwest Cook Inlet includes six leases in an arc north and northeast of the ConocoPhillips Alaska-operated North Cook Inlet unit, which produces gas from the Tyonek platform.

See story in Aug. 1 issue, available to subscribers online at noon, Friday, July 30, at

BLM begins new NPR-A planning effort

The Bureau of Land Management said yesterday it will begin preparation of an integrated activity plan and environmental impact statement for the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.

This is the first time a plan has been done for the entire NPR-A, BLM Alaska spokeswoman Ruth McCoard told Petroleum News this morning.

“We need to update our plans and we need to establish the planning guidance for the large unplanned southern portion” of NPR-A, McCoard said. The new plan, which has been in the works for some time, will give BLM the opportunity to have consistent management for the entire NPR-A, she said.

BLM said the new plan will incorporate the most current information and lay out management goals, objectives and actions that would be consistent across the entire NPR-A. The plan will also take into account emerging issues such as climate change and the recent listing of polar bears as a threatened and endangered species, the agency said.

The public scoping process began July 28; BLM said it would last at least 60 days, with the final ending date to be posted on the BLM website.

Public scoping meetings will be held at Anaktuvuk Pass, Anchorage, Atqasuk, Barrow, Fairbanks, Nuiqsut and Wainwright.

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