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NEWS BULLETIN

August 04, 1999 --- Vol. 5, No. 36August 1999

BP August term price up 15 percent from July

BP Amoco’s August term price for Alaska North Slope crude oil is $18.30 a barrel, up $2.44 a barrel (15.38 percent) from July’s term price of $15.86 a barrel.

This is the highest the term price has been since December of 1997 when it hit $18.32 a barrel. The term price bottomed this January at $9.37 a barrel. The average 1999 term price is $13.67 a barrel, compared to a 1998 comparable year-to-date average of $13.28 a barrel and a 1997 comparable year-to-date average of $20.10 a barrel.

BP is the largest producer of ANS crude and the only producer to post prices.

State fiscal year price up from spring forecast

The state Department of Revenue Division of Oil and Gas Audit said Aug. 3 that the fiscal year-to-date price for ANS crude is $17.07 a barrel, up $3.50 a barrel from the division’s spring 1999 estimate. The division said that West Coast refinery outages and a decrease in North Slope production have driven the ANS price higher since it hit an all-time low of $9.39 a barrel in December.

The state’s fiscal year begins July 1, but the fiscal year for prices is June 1 through May 31 because prices equate to revenue in the month that follows.

July ANS crude production down 2.6 percent from June

Tanker delays early in July and facilities’ maintenance at Prudhoe Bay, Lisburne and Valdez resulted in lower than expected production in July, the Alaska Department of Revenue Division of Oil and Gas Audit said Aug. 3.

Fiscal year-to-date production as of Aug. 3 averaged 1.006 million barrels a day, 41,000 barrels a day below the production estimate the division released in April. The division tracks prices and production from June 1 (the state’s fiscal year begins July 1) because prices and production relate to revenue in the month that follows.

Average ANS liquid production in July was 1.005 million barrels a day, compared to July 1998 liquid production averaging 1.180 million barrels a day.

July ANS crude production averaged 0.966 million barrels a day, compared to July 1998 average crude production of 1.122 million barrels a day.

BLM to require EIS for trans-Alaska pipeline renewal

The U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management will require an environmental impact statement for the right-of-way renewal for the trans-Alaska pipeline.

BLM Alaska State Director Fran Cherry said Aug. 2 the BLM has begun evaluating the steps that the federal government would take to renew the trans-Alaska pipeline system right-of-way. The original 30-year right-of-way will expire in January 2004.

“We are awaiting a letter of intent to renew the right-of-way from the TAPS-owner companies,” Cherry said. “One critical decision that can be made before we receive the letter is what level of environmental analysis we will conduct, an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement.

“Given the significance of the TAPS, we have determined that the renewal is of sufficient public interest and complexity to require an environmental impact statement.”

Cherry said that preparation of the EIS will begin when BLM receives the application for renewal from the pipeline’s owner companies.

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