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More Alaska Oil Will Aid in Katrina Response
Governor: Calls for additional production from North Slope


September 07, 2005

Alaska will do its part to help restore the nation's energy security in the wake of the Hurricane Katrina crisis by working to increase production of its available oil resources to replace lost production from the Gulf Coast, Governor Frank H. Murkowski said Tuesday.

The governor has spoken with representatives of BP Exploration, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Anadarko, and the Alyeska Pipeline Service Corp. to ask them to increase production as much as possible beyond current production levels. Alaska currently supplies approximately 17 percent of the nation's domestic oil production.

"Alaska has been a critical supplier of energy to our country for decades, and as the nation struggles with the catastrophic human and economic consequences of this devastating hurricane, it is natural for us to again play a leading role in meeting America's energy needs," the governor said.

The governor has met with the producers to enlist their support for his initiative, and to identify any operational challenges to ramping up oil production. He has also met with the Department of Natural Resources and the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission to determine what the state can do to streamline the permit approval process and facilitate increasing oil flow as soon as possible.

The governor said Alyeska officials have indicated they feel satisfied that the trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline could accommodate significant additional production. He said producers told him they would examine all opportunities for increasing production rates.

Murkowski has also spoken with John K. Norman, chairman of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, the organization responsible for maintaining the integrity of the state's oil reservoirs and production infrastructure.

"The governor has asked me, as vice chairman of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, to immediately activate a special task force within the IOGCC to examine adjustments to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve which may be needed to enable the nation to better respond to national emergencies," Norman said.

The governor noted that Alaska's oil producers have answered the nation's call in the past, increasing production and delivery of vital oil during the first Gulf War, and that the nation's leaders are looking at Alaska for a long-term solution to the nation's energy needs, both with increased oil production and a new natural gas pipeline.

"With congressional action pending on ANWR, I cannot overemphasize the critical role that Alaska plays in providing for the energy and national security needs of our nation," said Murkowski, who served as chairman of the Senate's Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

"This initiative once again demonstrates that Alaskans have the technical expertise, the resources and the willingness to help others whenever the need arises," Murkowski said.


Source of News:

Office of the Governor

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