Companies are putting a brake on exploration and large fields are harder to find

As London seeks transparency, the US will not allow auditors near its gold reserves

Regulation on extractive transparency had unforeseen effects

Oil taxes have once again been injected into the state legislative session in Juneau, adding complications in attempts to forge an agreement on a long-term state fiscal plan.
Last year fights over petroleum tax bills dragged the session into an extended overtime.
Now two state representatives, Reps….

A new report from the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development says that, following 10 years of steady increase, employment in Alaska’s oil industry dropped from 14,100 in 2015 to 11,100 in 2016. The report, written by DLWD economist Neal Fried and published in the department’s Alaska Ec…

ConocoPhillips Co. is looking at a 2023 timeline to bring its new Willow discovery into production, although permitting delays remain a source of uncertainty for the project.
The international Houston-based independent recently established a team in Alaska ‘to figure out what’s the most optimum way…

The federal government has approved a settlement between the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Furie Operating Alaska LLC over a Jones Act violation and fine.
The Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice approved the settlement on Feb. 3, acco…

House Rep. David Talerico served as co-chair of the Resources Committee for two years as a freshman lawmaker. Today he is the committee’s ranking Republican in the minority. The Healy Republican remains as engaged in resource development issues and will again find himself immersed in oil tax credit…

Resources Energy Inc., the Japanese company with plans to build a liquefied natural gas facility on Alaska’s Cook Inlet for the export of LNG to Japan, has its project on hold for the time being. In September the company said that it was anticipating a decision around the turn of the year on whether…

For several years the Arctic Council, the intergovernmental forum for the Arctic region, has been paying close attention to achieving international cooperation over emergency and oil spill preparedness and response in the Arctic region. On Feb. 6, during the Alaska Forum on the Environment, Nils And…

Hilcorp Alaska LLC is planning an eight-well development program at Milne Point.
The proposed program would require expanding the Milne Point F Pad to accommodate the additional wells and associated facilities on the southwest side of the pad. In addition to those space requirements, the expansion w…

When in December President Obama issued an executive order establishing a Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area, some Alaska lawmakers expressed vehement concerns about the potential locking up or obstruction of commercial activity across more than 100,000 square miles of ocean. But exactly wh…

ConocoPhillips Alaska has applied to the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation for an expansion of the Alpine Oil Pool, AOP, to include westward development of the Nanuq Kuparuk sands in anticipation of future development. The commission has tentatively scheduled a public hearing for March 14 at 9 a.m., b…

The number of rigs drilling for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by 17 the week ending Feb. 3 to 729.
A year ago, 571 rigs were active.
Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. said 583 rigs were targeting oil (up 17 from the previous week) and 145 natural gas (the same as the…

As part of the regulatory requirements for disconnecting some of the old pump stations along the trans-Alaska pipeline, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., the pipeline operator, has filed its annual status reports for the redundant pump stations with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska. Essentially pump…

Glacier Oil and Gas Corp. has been focusing on its west side properties lately.
While the independent recently announced plans for a series of ‘small ball’ projects at its North Fork unit for the near-term, it has undertaken a major optimization program at the West McArthur River unit and is planning…

The Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is addressing a number of issues related to bonding, lease relinquishment and blowout contingency planning, Chair Cathy Foerster told the House Resources Committee Feb. 8.
There are three commissioners, appointed to six-year terms, she said, with Holli…

Oil producer BP’s earnings rose less than expected in the fourth quarter, as it sought to adapt to low energy prices with cost cuts, asset sales and a pullback in investment plans.
A key measure of net income, the underlying replacement cost profit, rose to $400 million from $196 million in the sam…

Qatar’s energy minister says OPEC members and oil-producing allies are adhering to previously agreed production cuts aimed at taking supply off the market to push up the price of crude.
Mohammed bin Saleh al-Sada said in Doha on Feb. 8 that ‘adherence is excellent’ to cuts in oil production agreed…

Doyon Ltd. has started work on a new 3-D seismic survey in the Nenana basin a few miles north of where the Fairbanks-based Alaska Native regional corporation drilled its Toghotthele No. 1 exploration well in 2016 with a partner, another Native regional corporation, Cook Inlet Region Inc. of Anchorag…

Nabors Industries Ltd. and Weatherford International plc announced recently that they have signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding to form an alliance focused on delivering enhanced drilling solutions to the oil and gas land market in the lower 48 states of the United States.
The MOU states…

The Municipality of Anchorage, which sued PND Engineers Inc. in 2013 over the failed Port of Anchorage intermodal expansion project and sought more than $100 million in damages, has settled with PND for $750,000.
PND was the designer of record on the project, which was halted before completion of th…

Contango Ore Inc. Feb. 2 said the first phase of 2017 drilling at the Tetlin gold project in Interior Alaska was underway. Peak Gold LLC, a joint venture between Contango Ore and a wholly owned subsidiary of Royal Gold Inc., invested roughly US$10.6 million on exploration at Tetlin in 2016, which in…

According to the United States Geological Survey’s annual report, ‘Mineral Commodity Summaries 2017,’ the value of non-fuel minerals produced in the United States and Alaska during 2016 remained at similar levels to 2015.
Alaska mines produced roughly US$3.09 billion worth of minerals, excluding pet…

Sabina Gold and Silver Corp. Feb. 7 announced a base budget for 2017 of around C$8.5 million, which will be used primarily for permitting activities but will also include some exploration at its Back River gold project in Nunavut. Late in 2015, Sabina submitted an environmental impact statement for a…

Ucore Rare Metals Inc. Feb. 8 reported that it has completed the initial stage of detailed engineering for a platinum group metals – rhodium, palladium and platinum – phase of its U.S. strategic metals complex. Being developed as a joint venture between Ucore and IBC Advanced Technologies, the strat…

Pretium Resources Inc. Feb. 3 reported that construction at its Brucejack gold mine is ahead of schedule and commissioning of the mill is slated to begin in March, ahead of the mid-2017 start originally planned. In preparation for commissioning, the company has stockpiled more than 110,000 metric to…

Mountain Province Diamonds Inc. Feb. 6 reported the recovery of a 67.87 carat gem quality diamond during the ramp-up of production at the Gahcho Kué Mine. This is the largest gem quality diamond recovered so far at this newest mine in the Northwest Territories. “The presence of large gem quality dia…

President Donald Trump is set to ink his signature on a resolution that overturns a midnight hour Obama administration rule that threatened U.S. coal miners with added regulatory burden.
The so-called Stream Protection Rule was touted by the Obama administration as a necessary clarification of the r…

Copper Fox Metals Inc. Feb. 2 announced a C$900,000 program for Schaft Creek copper-gold-molybdenum project in northwestern British Columbia. This program will include a remodeling of the resource, engineering studies, environmental data collection, and permitting related to future exploration. Scha…

Brent jumps $1 per barrel after cartel achieves ‘one of deepest cuts’ in its history

Only some of the majors are well placed to capitalise on the nascent sector recovery

Shipment may beat onset of US gas exports

Shah Committee last week opined that Reliance Industries should pay the government for the “unjust enrichment” by way of drawing natural gas from an adjacent block of ONGC in the KG basin.