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NEWS BULLETIN

July 15, 2002 --- Vol. 8, No. 72July 2002

Phillips to begin permitting gas pipeline if energy bill passes

Kevin Meyers, president of Phillips Alaska Inc., told attendees at an Anchorage Chamber of Commerce-Alaska Oil and Gas Association luncheon in Anchorage today that Phillips is prepared to begin permitting the southern route of the North Slope pipeline.html'>gas pipeline if the energy legislation pending in Congress passes with two critical components that are in the current Senate energy bill.

That bill, which is under consideration by a joint committee of the Senate and the House, contains “certainty and expediency” for the regulatory and permitting process and a natural gas price floor which acts as a “tax mechanism that mitigates the substantial risk for fluctuations in future natural gas prices and potential cost overruns,” Meyers said.

When asked if Phillips was prepared to move forward with permitting the southern route without the participation of the other two North Slope gas owners, BP and ExxonMobil, Phillips Alaska spokeswoman Dawn Patience told PNA that Phillips was not prepared to comment on that at this time.

ExxonMobil spokesman Bob Davis told PNA today that his company has “not changed our position relative to route flexibility, number one … and remains opposed to government subsidies related to the gasline, including a gas price floor.”

Dave MacDowell, spokesman for BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc.’s gas group, was not in the office today, but he told PNA in early June that “ everyone recognizes how important a good federal energy bill is to moving an Alaska gas pipeline project forward,” but in addition to passage of federal enabling legislation, he said there has to be “progress on three other areas for movement to the next phase,” including “state of Alaska fiscal predictability, development of an efficient governmental regulatory framework in Canada (federal, First Nations, provinces and territories) and technology-based project cost reductions.”

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