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December 17, 2009 --- Vol. 15, No. 96December 2009

Cook Inlet Energy wraps up deal, prepares to produce on inlet’s west side

Managers with new company Cook Inlet Energy say they’ve wrapped up their purchase of a package of formerly abandoned oil and gas assets on the inlet’s west side and are ready to restart production.

“We’re immediately hiring back many of the employees who lost their jobs due to the shutdown,” David Hall, Cook Inlet Energy’s chief executive, said in a press release.

Hall previously was vice president in charge of Alaska operations for Pacific Energy Resources Ltd., the California independent that abandoned the Cook Inlet assets as part of bankruptcy proceedings.

The asset package includes the West McArthur River unit, the West Foreland natural gas field, the Redoubt unit and Osprey offshore platform, the Kustatan onshore production facility, a 30 percent stake in the Three Mile Creek field operated by Aurora Gas and more than 600,000 acres of exploration lands.

As part of the deal, Anchorage-based Cook Inlet Energy said it became a subsidiary of Miller Energy Resources, a publicly traded Tennessee oil and gas exploration, production and drilling company.

Miller, in a separate press release, said it paid the nearly $4.5 million necessary to acquire the former Pacific Energy assets and cover bonding and other costs.

Cook Inlet Energy will operate the Alaska properties, Miller said.

“Initial production is estimated to be 280 barrels of oil a day,” said Scott Boruff, Miller’s chief executive. The goal is to push production to more than 1,100 barrels daily by the fourth quarter of 2010, he said.

A state official told Petroleum News that Cook Inlet Energy has met all requirements as an operator.

See story in Jan. 20 issue, available online at noon Friday, Jan. 18, at www.PetroleumNews.com.

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