This Week in Alaska Business History January 27, 2002

PHOTO/Courtesy Sourdough Express Inc.
Editor’s note: "This Week in Alaska Business History" revisits events that shaped our past.

"Those who cannot
remember the past are
condemned to repeat it."
-- George Santayana, 1863-1952

20 years ago this week

Anchorage Times

Jan. 28, 1982

Gas pipeline package fight moves to court

By Betty Mills

Times Washington Bureau

Washington -- In a move that could substantially delay the Alaska pipeline project, a group of 24 members of Congress, five states and several consumer groups joined in a lawsuit to overturn the pipeline waiver package.

The suit was filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals here by Sen. Howard Metzenbaum, D-Ohio, who led the Senate opposition to the waiver package passed by Congress last fall. At the time, Metzenbaum threatened legal action.

The suit claims the waiver package was enacted under flawed procedures and will require natural gas consumers in 36 states to guarantee payment of $32 billion in costs of building the project.

The waivers include the North Slope gas conditioning plant in the project, streamlining regulatory procedures and allowing consumers to be billed before gas starts to flow.

Anchorage Times

Jan. 25, 1982

Oil companies shell out $61 million for leases

By Bruce Bartley

The Associated Press

Fairbanks -- Oil companies offered more than $61 million Wednesday for federal oil and gas leases on about 762,000 acres in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.

While oil company executives were generally pleased with the results of the largest onshore federal lease sale in history, federal officials said they were disappointed it didn’t generate more money.

Alaska and the federal government will divide equally the bonus money offered Wednesday, as well as annual rental fees of $3 per acre on the 10-year leases.

The oil companies also may pay royalties equal to one-sixth of any oil and gas produced from leased lands. That money also will be split 50-50 between the federal government.

It was the first lease sale ever in the 23-million-acre reserve on the North Slope, just west of the producing Prudhoe and Kuparuk oil fields.

10 years ago this week

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Feb. 3, 1992

Oil field technology pushes limit

By Ray Tyson

Alaska Journal of Commerce

ARCO Alaska Inc. believes more barrels of crude oil can be squeezed out of the Prudhoe Bay reservoir during its lifetime but says the means to recover billions more above current estimates doesn’t exist.

"We don’t mean to trivialize it, but at the same time we want to make the point that we don’t see a breakthrough in technology," said Jerry Pollock, ARCO’s manager of engineering of Prudhoe Bay.

Technology and ingenuity have boosted Prudhoe Bay’s estimated recoverable reserves from 9.6 billion barrels to about 12 billion barrels, leaving a remaining target of roughly 10 billion barrels.

To help reach the 12 billion barrel mark, Exxon and co-field operators ARCO and BP Exploration plan to invest at least another $2 billion to $2.5 billion in America’s largest oil field.

Alaska Journal of Commerce

Feb. 3, 1992

Sawmill waste becomes roofing for pricey homes

By Lew Bresee

Wrangell Sentinel

Wrangell -- Frank Age has built a business utilizing a product that would otherwise go to waste.

Age produces roofing products from culled cedar that normally is discarded by lumber firms. He previously manufactured the product in his native Oregon, but he came to Wrangell last April, after logging started to hit a decline in his home state.

The move to Wrangell was first contemplated by Age and his wife, Debbie, in October 1990. He said he flew up to see if there would be a large enough supply of cedar to manufacture his product. He found about 15 to 20 years’ worth of unused culled cedar.

Age’s Cedar Products produces shakes, or roofing shingles, from red cedar. Since the shakes are relatively small, Age can get a quality product by selectively cutting the short pieces of cedar.

-- Compiled by Ed Bennett.

01/27/2002 - 8:00pm