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November 02, 2000 --- Vol. 6, No. 51November 2000

Bill Stevens plans to drill at Katalla for Chugach Alaska

Last week Bill Stevens of Cassandra Energy Corp., Kenai, approached the U.S. Forest Service about doing oil and gas exploratory drilling at Katalla, 50 miles south of Cordova. Katalla was the site of Alaska’s first oil production in 1902.

Forest Service officials told PNA Nov. 1 that under a contract with Chugach Alaska Corp., Stevens plans to put a drill rig on privately owned land and drill horizontally into adjacent ground where subsurface oil and gas rights are held by Chugach Alaska. Stevens expects to start drilling by August 2001 and be finished by August 2002. If Chugach Alaska is unable to find paying quantities of hydrocarbons by Dec. 31, 2004, the subsurface rights to the acreage revert to the federal government.

Del Welch, owner of the Katalla land on which Stevens hopes to place a drill rig, told PNA that he and his wife are in negotiations with Stevens to sell their property. Welch said he has all the permits needed to drill on the property.

Stevens is the safety and health program coordinator for Inlet Drilling Alaska Inc. in Kenai. Inlet owns Rig CC1 which just finished a well for Anadarko Petroleum Corp. on the west side of Cook Inlet.

Forest Service officials said they expect Stevens to file his proposed plan of operations and permit applications within the next month. Cal Baker, Cordova district ranger for the Chugach National Forest, said Stevens will probably get his permit “because we are dealing with valid, existing rights in the area ... independent of the forest plan revision that is currently out for public review until Dec. 14.”

If Stevens finds oil, Rogers said Chugach Alaska is entitled to surface access under a 1982 agreement with the federal government. Surface access would include pipelines, roads and other facilities for the transportation of oil and gas from the Katalla area to market.

Weeks joins Winstar Petroleum

Winstar Petroleum LLC said Nov. 1 that Jim Weeks has joined the company as president and chief executive officer. The company, formerly known as Petersburg Energy LLC, is an independent oil and gas company with more than 12,000 acres of oil and gas leases on the North Slope.

Weeks recently retired from ARCO after 30 years, most of which were spent working on projects in Alaska. Winstar was founded by John Winther of Petersburg. The company said it hopes to begin drilling next year.

The company’s offices are at 3111 C St., Ste. 500, Anchorage, AK 99503; telephone (907) 273-8224.

AOGCC engineer seat filled

Petroleum engineer Julie M. Heusser has been named to the engineer seat previously held by Bob Christenson on the three-member Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, Gov. Tony Knowles said Oct. 26.

Born and raised in Alaska, Heusser worked as a field petroleum engineer and reservoir engineer for BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. from 1977 until joining ARCO Alaska Inc. in 1981 where she worked until 1994 as a reservoir engineer, field development engineer, workover/stimulation engineer, annular communication engineer and well services supervisor. Most recently, Heusser has worked as a self-employed consulting engineer.

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