The state of Alaska has released a new five-year oil and gas lease sale schedule. Sixteen areawide sales are planned through 2005.
"After some juggling with the lease sale schedule over the past couple of years due to uncertainties surrounding the BP-ARCO merger, we have settled down to a schedule that provides the predictability desired by industry," Gov. Tony Knowles said Jan. 11. "It also allows for public input during the fall and winter months, when residents of these areas have more time to focus on the issues."
The 16 sales that the state is proposing to conduct include five in Cook Inlet, five in the Beaufort Sea, five on the North Slope and one in the North Slope Foothills area. The Cook Inlet sales are scheduled for each May while the North Slope and Beaufort Sea sales are scheduled for each October. The single North Slope Foothills sale is scheduled to be held concurrently with the Cook Inlet sale this May.
Under areawide leasing, the state offers all available state land within a geographical region. Alaska began conducting areawide sales in 1998. Since then, the state has held six sales, leasing approximately 1.6 million acres for nearly $68 million in bonus bids.
The new leasing schedule is available on the Division of Oil and Gas Website: www.dog.dnr.state.ak.us/oil. Copies of the schedule are also available from the Department of Natural Resources, Public Information Center, and the Division of Oil and Gas, located at 550 West 7th Ave. in Anchorage; and from the Commissioner's office, located at 400 Willoughby Ave. in Juneau.