November 02, 2001 --- Vol. 7, No. 138November 2001

British Columbia government signs oil, gas pact with natives

The British Columbia government and three aboriginal First Nations have negotiated the first break in a three-month blockade of oil and natural gas sites in the province's northeast.

Three of seven Treaty 8 First Nations have signed a five-year memorandum of understanding that sets out the rules for new oil and gas developments and a fee structure for services provided by native communities.

"The overall purpose of the agreement is to provide certainty and build positive long-term relationships amongst governments and industry," said Energy Minister Richard Neufeld.

A spokesman for Neufeld said the government is now pursuing similar deals with the other First Nations.

In particular, the industry is anxious about the Ladyfern area, where Petro-Canada and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. have been stalled in their efforts to develop what is rated as the hottest gas play in North America.

A spokesman for Petro-Canada said the company is "encouraged" by the breakthrough so far and is hoping headway can be made in the Ladyfern area.

For now, he said, Petro-Canada has suspended construction indefinitely on a feeder pipeline to tie in three new gas wells, noting that the "window is becoming smaller and smaller" to complete the project this winter.

October production down from September

Alaska North Slope crude production declined 1.53 percent in October, down an average of 14,075 barrels per day from September due to curtailment of production Oct. 4-7 while a bullet hole was repaired in the trans-Alaska pipeline.

ANS crude oil production averaged 903,463 barrels a day for October, compared to 917,538 bpd in September.

The only North Slope field with increased production in October was Endicott. At an average 33,692 bpd the field's average production increased 7.2 percent from September.

Alpine production had the largest percentage drop, down 5.6 percent to an average of 91,523 bpd in October.

Lisburne production dropped 2.9 percent, averaging 72,179 bpd. Kuparuk River production was down 2.4 percent, averaging 203,192 bpd. Prudhoe Bay dropped only 0.8 percent, averaging 451,209 bpd and Milne Point was the closest to level, declining 0.2 percent with a daily average of 51,668 bpd.

Prudhoe Bay natural gas liquids production averaged 36,081 bpd in October, down 10.7 percent.

Cook Inlet production averaged 33,611 bpd, down 1.1 percent from September.

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