We bid adieu to Gail Phillips, a great Alaskan
It is with deep sadness that we say goodbye to Gail Phillips, one of the founding directors of KEEP Alaska Competitive and a former Speaker of the Alaska House of Representatives. Gail had a true passion for responsible natural resource development, politics and serving Alaska. Her wise counsel and eternal optimism will be missed.
Gail dedicated her life to making Alaska the best it could be, epitomized by this observation from Joe Hayes, a friend and former Alaska legislator, which her family shares in her obituary. “I learned so much from you Madam Speaker over the years and I just want to say thank you. I will miss your ability to work in a bi-partisan fashion to do the right thing for subsistence when the head winds were so strong against it. You were a leader willing to be a stateswoman first and not a politician, even if it cost you later in your career. As I look at politics today, I miss when the parties were less tribal, more civil and looking out for the interest of all. Madam Speaker. You have earned the right to gavel out sine die for a final time as you have left a legacy that will be hard to replace. Rest now and know you leave an incredible legacy in your wake. Until we meet again.”
ConocoPhillips Alaska’s first quarter report shows significant Alaska investment
Let’s take a look at the numbers. In the first quarter of 2021, ConocoPhillips Alaska:
Since 2007, ConocoPhillips Alaska has paid more than $38 billion in taxes and royalties to the state and federal government. Of that amount, about $30 billion went directly to the state. More here.
From our Facebook feed:
Prop 1 defeat ‘good’ for Anchorage economy
Bill Popp with the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation is optimistic for the future of the oil and gas industry in Alaska. In a recently released video sponsored by the companies of McKinley Management, Bill called the industry a “major direct and indirect driver” of the Anchorage economy and cited several events that point us in the right direction. These include defeat of Ballot Measure 1, a recent recovery of oil prices, huge new North Slope oil discoveries, mitigation of the pandemic through broad deployment of vaccinations by the end of 2021 and a stabilized international marketplace. You can watch his presentation here.
Winter exploration produces ‘encouraging’ results
Here’s some warm news from a cold spot. Early results from the North Slope's two winter exploration wells are encouraging, operators said.
88 Energy, whose subsidiary Emerald House drilled the Merlin 1 well in NPR-Alaska, says drilling data indicates multiple potentially hydrocarbon bearing zones" were encountered in the Nanushuk formation.
Pantheon Resources, whose affiliate Great Bear Pantheon drilled the Talitha A well on state land, said they have "encountered five zones" all of which are hydrocarbon bearing and warrant testing. More here.
Forecast up with rising oil prices
The Alaska Department of Revenue delivered some good news recently when it unveiled its spring forecast. Rising oil prices should add $332 million to this fiscal year’s income, and an additional $460 million next year. The revenue forecast is based on an average FY21 North Slope oil price of $51.65 per barrel. More here.
A step closer to unlocking billions of barrels of heavy oil
An experiment to increase production of the North Slope’s billions of barrels of heavy oil is showing good results. “We have succeeded so far,” said Abhijit Dandekar, chair of UAF’s Petroleum Engineering Department. Dandekar is leading a team of UAF researchers in collaboration with Hilcorp Alaska engineers to flesh out the viability of injecting a polymer into Milne Point’s Schrader Bluff heavy oil reservoir. The effort is funded by a four-year, $9.7 million Department of Energy-sponsored study. So far the team has increased production by about 1,000 barrels per day. More here.
Putting STEM to work on the Slope
In a year when educators have struggled to even talk with their students, Alaska Resource Education (ARE) has used innovation and technology to grow and expand its impact. ARE’s mission is to educate students about Alaska’s resources through curriculum that meets Alaska State Science Standards and has been aligned with the common core in English, language arts and math. Their online resources include a video library where folks like Taylor Owen talk about coming to Alaska to work as a guide but end up as a production operator where he uses STEM every day. More here.
What you can do