$10 million in supplemental for ANWR 1002 area seismic shoot
The administration has requested $10 million in the supplemental budget to allow the Alaska Department of Natural Resources to participate in acquiring seismic data in the 1002 area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, in anticipation of federal lease sales in the area.
In the request the administration noted that the federal government has recently opened the 1002 area of ANWR to oil and gas leasing, exploration and development.
“Availability of seismic data will improve interest in exploring for oil and gas within the 1002 area,” the funds request says. “This funding allows the state to work with other interested parties to provide seismic data which will enhance state revenue from lease sales and decrease time to drilling and production.”
In a presentation of the supplemental budget in the Senate Finance Committee Feb. 19, Office of Management and Budget Director Pat Pitney said $10 million doesn’t go a long way in seismic acquisition. The state gets 50 percent of monies from leasing and royalty in the 1002 area and she said if there is additional interest there will be more revenues to the state.
DNR Commissioner Andy Mack told the committee that the Congressional Budget Office estimated the two proposed lease sales in the 1002 area could generate $2.2 billion, and said the state believes most of that money would come in the first of the two proposed sales.
He said the state has learned through the tax credit program how valuable seismic information is, and with the potential of a significant amount of revenue the state wants to do what it can to draw as many qualified bidders as possible and increase the value of the sale to the state.
- KRISTEN NELSON