Warm weather, maintenance knock down Slope's January output

PHOTO/Ron Veltkamp/SBA
Alaska North Slope petroleum production, hampered by warmer-than-average weather and cutbacks for maintenance, fell an average of 17,000 barrels per day in January.

oilgas.jpg Overall output totaled 1.021 million barrels per day for January, down 1.7 percent from 1.038 million b/d in December, according to Alaska Department of Revenue officials. Last month’s ANS petroleum production also reflected a long-term downward spiral, dipping 40,000 b/d below January 2000 production of 1.061 million b/d.

Natural gas liquids output in January averaged 52,615 b/d, up slightly from 52,065 b/d a month earlier. However, the NGLs output showed a long-term decline, dropping nearly 22 percent from 67,031 b/d in January 2000.

Crude production fell 1.8 percent in January to 968,457 b/d from 986,000 b/d in December. Average crude output in January also lagged year-ago production of 994,000 b/d.

Production at the three smallest North Slope gathering centers rose in January, while Prudhoe Bay, Kuparuk and Lisburne reported lower output.

Two days of maintenance work at Prudhoe Bay mid-month hurt average production in the North Slope’s largest field in January. Output of crude oil and NGLs fell about 22,000 b/d to 552,840 b/d from 575,204 b/d in December. It also reflected more than a 50,000 b/d drop from 609,066 b/d in January 2000. Prudhoe Bay is operated by BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc.

Average crude production at the Phillips Alaska-operated Kuparuk River field fell in January by nearly 12,000 b/d to 224,688 b/d from 236,476 b/d a month earlier. Production at BP-operated Lisburne also fell slightly in January to 87,857 b/d from 88,579 b/d in December.

Phillips’ Alpine field posted average output of 67,211 b/d in January, up more than 12,000 b/d, or 22.5 percent, from 54,848 b/d in December. Though production continued to seesaw throughout January at Alpine, the field set a one-day production record Jan. 30 of 86,926 b/d, after rebounding from a low of 31,123 b/d Jan. 8, state Revenue economist Denise Hawes said Feb. 5. "I know they had shipping pump problems earlier in the month," she added.

Average output at BP-operated Milne Point rose slightly in January to 50,885 b/d, compared with 50,104 b/d a month earlier.

Endicott, another BP-operated gathering center, reported slightly higher average crude output of 37,591 b/d in January, up from 37,303 b/d in December.

02/17/2001 - 8:00pm