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NEWS BULLETIN

October 28, 2003 --- Vol. 9, No. 102October 2003

Three companies interested in Bristol Bay exploration licenses

Three companies are interested in exploring for oil and gas in the Bristol Bay region, where the state of Alaska is offering 3 million acres of land for exploration licensing.

The Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Division of Oil and Gas, received one exploration license proposal Sept. 23. It then solicited competing proposals, and Jim Hansen, the divisionís leasing manager, told Petroleum News today that the division received two letters of intent to submit competing proposals by the Oct. 27 deadline. The proposals are due Nov. 25.

The division began the process in July when it solicited exploration license proposals for an area of approximately 3 million acres of state-owned and state-selected or top filed lands in the Bristol Bay region, north of the village of Naknek and east of Dillingham. Proposals must be for between 10,000 and 500,000 acres, and must include specific items: lands proposed for licensing, specific work commitment expressed in dollars, terms of the license and amount and form of security to be posted.

Companies had until Aug. 25 to notify the state that they intended to submit proposals; those proposals were due Sept. 23. The division received two expressions of interest by the August deadline, and one proposal by the September deadline. Because the process is competitive, the division is not releasing the names of the companies which submitted letters of intent, or the name of the company which submitted a proposal.

Comments from the public and agencies on whether a license in this area is in the state's best interest are due Nov. 25.

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