October 31, 2003 --- Vol. 9, No. 105October 2003

Governor to meet with independents

In mid-September, at the annual meeting of the Alaska Support Industry Alliance ,Alaska Gov. Frank Murkowski briefly mentioned that he planned to meet with the independent oil and gas companies doing business in Alaska. The governor said he was interested in hearing what they needed from the state of Alaska — i.e. what it would take to get them to invest more in oil and gas leases, exploration and development projects in the state.

This week Tom Irwin’s office told Petroleum News that the governor’s meeting with independents has been tentatively scheduled for the first week in December. Irwin is the commissioner of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, which houses the Alaska Division of Oil and Gas.

At the Alliance meeting Murkowski said the “message I want to get out — whether it be Oklahoma or Houston or Dallas and London — (is) that Alaska is going to be competitive in energy. We're going to do what it takes. We're not going to give anything away. We're not going to by any means do it at the expense of the environment, but the name of the game here in this state is resources: oil, gas, timber, fish, minerals…”

Alliance files for Nikolaevsk unit on southern Kenai Peninsula

Alliance Energy of Tulsa, Okla., has filed an application with the Alaska Division of Oil and Gas to form the Nikolaevsk unit on the Kenai Peninsula between the North Fork and Deep Creek units, near the unincorporated community of Nikolaevsk. The proposed unit covers some 17,327 acres in 10 oil and gas leases.

Larry Snead of Alliance told the division that the company “is a small, independent oil and gas producer with substantial holdings on the southern Kenai Peninsula.” State records show the company has some 30,650 acres of state oil and gas leases.

The Nikolaevsk unit is “just northeast of the federally managed North Fork unit,” the company said.

“NorthStar Energy Group Inc., a corporation with the same management as Alliance, recently reached an agreement with Enstar to provide all of the natural gas needs of the southern Kenai Peninsula,” Alliance said. That agreement includes an Enstar-built pipeline from Homer to Anchor Point, “within a few miles of the North Fork unit” and the proposed Nikolaevsk unit, and a NorthStar built pipeline from North Fork to Anchor Point.

Some of the leases in the proposed unit expire at the end of January or early in February, and the formation of the unit will extend those leases.

The North Fork Unit No. 11-4 was drilled in 1970 in a portion of the proposed Nikolaevsk unit formerly in the once larger North Fork unit. That well “encountered numerous Beluga and Tyonek sands that had gas shows,” the company said. The plan of exploration, required to extend the leases through a unit, includes: drilling of an additional well to begin by Dec. 31, 2004; acquisition of additional geophysical data before Dec. 31, 2004.

See story in Nov. 9 issue of Petroleum News.

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