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Vol. 12, No. 36 Week of September 09, 2007
Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry

August ANS down 9% on field maintenance

North Slope production averages 658,022 bpd for month; both Milne Point, Alpine down temporarily for planned maintenance

Kristen Nelson

For Petroleum News

Alaska North Slope crude oil production averaged 658,022 barrels per day in August, down 9.2 percent from a July average of 724,564 bpd, driven by planned maintenance at the Milne Point and Alpine fields and a partial one-day maintenance shutdown of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline.

The largest July-to-August production decline, 52.4 percent, was at the BP Exploration (Alaska)-operated Endicott field where production was curtailed through Aug. 12 due to a turnaround which began in late July. The Alaska Department of Revenue said in July that one compressor train at Endicott was expected to be out of service until the end of August, reducing production by some 13,000 bpd. Production from the field was in the 5,000-7,000 bpd range through Aug. 12, remained in the 20,000-bpd range for another week and then fluctuated between 20,000 and 50,000 bpd for the remainder of the month. Endicott averaged 21,363 bpd in August compared to a July average of 44,866 bpd.

Since corrosion issues forced shutdown of some Prudhoe Bay pipelines a year ago, production figures from Endicott have also included 33,000 bpd from Prudhoe Bay flow station 2. Revenue said in July that planned maintenance at FS 2 from July 28-Aug. 8 was expected to reduce production by approximately 33,000 bpd.

Maintenance cuts production

Revenue said there was a partial one-day planned maintenance shutdown of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline Aug. 25, with ANS flow reduced to 305,000 bpd.

BPs Milne Point field was down for planned maintenance Aug. 23, with production reduced approximately 35,000 bpd, the department said. Production at Milne averaged 26,046 bpd in August, down 31.7 percent from a July average of 38,154. Production began to fall at the field Aug. 20 and there was no production Aug. 24-28. Production began at 561 bpd Aug. 29 and had reached 20,104 bpd by Aug. 31. Milne Point field includes Schrader Bluff heavy oil production.

The ConocoPhillips Alaska-operated Alpine field also saw planned maintenance in August. Production began to drop Aug. 24 and was nominal through Aug. 28; the field was back up to 128,499 bpd by the end of the month. The August average at Alpine (which includes production from the Fiord and Nanuq satellites) was 106,045 bpd, down 13.4 percent from a July average of 122,463 bpd.

Lisburne production up

Production was down 11.3 percent at the ConocoPhillips-operated Kuparuk River field, averaging 139,691 bpd in August compared to 157,550 bpd in July. Kuparuk includes satellite production from West Sak, Tabasco, Tarn, Meltwater and Palm.

The BP-operated Northstar field averaged 37,401 bpd in August, down 2.5 percent from a July average of 38,372 bpd.

Prudhoe Bay, also operated by BP, averaged 300,308 bpd in August, down 2.3 percent from a July average of 307,382 bpd. Prudhoe Bay production includes western satellites Midnight Sun, Aurora, Polaris, Borealis and Orion.

BP-operated Lisburne had the only July-to-August production increase, averaging 27,168 bpd in August, up 11.4 percent from a July average of 15,777 bpd.

The August temperature at pump station 1 on the North Slope averaged 47.2 degrees Fahrenheit compared to a five-year average of 44.6 degrees F.

Cook Inlet crude oil production averaged 14,727 bpd in August, down 3.8 percent from a July average of 15,306 bpd.



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