Some of the Canadians expected to address US and Canadian audience members of the 7th Annual Oil & Gas Congress include TransCanada’s Tony Palmer, Alliance Pipeline Founder, John Lagadin, and Fred Carmichael of the Aboriginal Pipeline Group.  A Who’s Who of Alaskan energy leaders will appear tomorrow and Wednesday, while large array of Alaska in-state energy leaders will participate in an all-day session on Thursday.  -dh


The Seventh Annual Alaska Oil and Gas Congress convenes tomorrow in Anchorage (Agenda).  Your author and Platts’ Director of News, John Kingston (NGP Photo), will co-chair the conference.  The agenda covers virtually all oil & gas issues at play today in Alaska and northern Canada.  We will bring you a few reports from the conference.  -dh

Petroleum News.  Norwegian oil major Statoil is still figuring out its continuing plans for Chukchi Sea exploration, determining the resources it needs and deciding on the timing of any exploration drilling, Lars Sunde, the head of Statoil Exploration Alaska’s Anchorage office, said this month.

Petroleum News by Eric Lidji.  Repsol is planning to conduct one of the broadest single-season North Slope exploration campaigns in recent memory, according to recently filed documents.

Comment:  Both of these stories have to do about the possibility of or planning to perform

Here is last week’s video presentation by the Commissioner of Natural Resources, Dan Sullivan (NGP Photo), on throughput status of the Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS), Alaska’s economic lifeline and one of America’s critical sources of domestic production, jobs and national security.  -dh

exploratory drilling.  For Alaska citizens, the challenge remains:  Supporting government policy that leads to production that will fill Alaska’s economic lifeline, the Trans Alaska oil pipeline.  Filling a now declining pipeline requires production of huge new reserves of oil.  The sources of huge new reserves rest beneath state and federal lands.  State tax policy currently encourages exploration but discourages production.  Federal policy currently discourages exploration without which there cannot be production.  Citizens are logically left with the conclusion that their future and the fortune of their children rests with an Alaska government addicted to double digit growth while its income dwindles and a federal government that continuously delays the granting of permits that would lead to production, jobs and economic recovery.  Yes, from a citizen perspective, the government looks broken at worst.  At best we watch the spectacle of one generation trying to transfer wealth and opportunity to itself from the next.  

P.S.  The Alaska Commissioner of Natural Resources’ office announced sponsorship of an Alaska Strategic and Critical Minerals Summit.  That is important, well and good.  But if the oil pipeline is not sustained as discussed above, Alaska’s infrastructure and ability to support the sort of resource development discussed below diminishes.  Also, if politicians kill energy production in Alaska, minerals investors have to be wondering two things: 1) "what sort of tax and regulatory changes can we expect from the unpredictable federal and state governments," and 2)  "if the big energy producers are discouraged from exploring and producing, will state politicians look to mining and other industries like tourism and commercial fishing to make up the difference to their coffers?"

 Our suggestion: evolve a smaller government and reduce costly regulations wherever possible–if we really care about passing on a sustainable economy to our children.  A second suggestion: all citizens could help determine the outcome of these issues by commenting on the federal and state energy issues noted below!  -dh

The state of Alaska and the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) are sponsoring an Alaska Strategic and Critical Minerals Summit in Fairbanks on Sept. 30. This all-day event will focus on Alaska’s potential for exploration, development and processing of strategic minerals, which include rare-earth elements (REEs).

Governor Sean Parnell and U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski will speak at the summit. The agenda includes presentations by experts from the minerals industry, government agencies and UAF. A press conference is planned midday.
“Despite our world-class mines, Alaska remains relatively under explored for minerals. We have the potential to boost our contribution to the nation’s domestic supply of strategic minerals,” said Natural Resources Commissioner Dan Sullivan.
Alaska’s mineral potential includes at least 70 known occurrences of REEs. Geologists working for the state received funding this year to conduct a statewide assessment of strategic mineral occurrences. Their research is ongoing.
To register for the event, go to

 Houston Chronicle: Offshore drilling chief to stay on the job.   The federal agency that oversees offshore drilling will be dismantled in two weeks, but the former prosecutor who now heads the office isn’t going anywhere — at least not right away. Michael Bromwich will serve as director of the new Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement until a permanent director is selected, the Obama administration confirmed today. Tommy Beaudreau will take over as the head of the new Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. The two agencies — known as BSEE and BOEM — are set to replace the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement on Oct. 1. Bromwich currently heads BOEMRE, and Beaudreau is a senior adviser there.

Also, the President’s authority to use the Antiquities Act to unilaterally designate new National Monuments was the subject of a legislative hearing last week.

Issues begging citizen comment: 

 NPG Readers: Please Comment on EPA O&G Emissions Regs 
Before October 24, 2011 send comments re: unnecessary natural gas emissions rules that will further slow down America’s economy and employment without significant benefit.  Federal Register notice with filing instructions
NPG Readers: Please Comment on ANWR.  Here’s how.
Testify: Fairbanks 10-19-11, Anchorage 10-20-11
Written testimony due: 11-15-11
(We are pleased to note House Joint Resolution 11 sponsored by by Charisse Millett (NGP Photo) in the House urging the Congress to not convert the 1002 area of ANWR to a status that prevents oil and gas development.   NGP Readers can refer to this resolution in their own comments and rely on the information conveyed by Representative Millett’s resolution.  -dh)


October 14 ends the comment period for the Wishbone Hill Coal Permit Renewal and we urge readers to file electronic comments early.  Don’t be technical if that’s not your background; just say, "I support the Wishbone Hill Coal Permit Renewal".  Here’s the state webpage and here is a very good letter penned by Alaska State Senator Cathy Giessel (NGP Photo).  We would be delighted to post other legislative and citizen comments on this and other comment period issues — such as those coming up in the blocks above.  Write us here. We urge citizens and public officials to take just a few minutes to influence a process that will determine what kind of economy our children will inherit.  -dh