Morning Headlamp – Fracking Tests at Prudhoe Bay; Persily sets AGPA straight

First things first. Accumulate Energy Alaska is launching an effort to determine the production potential of crude oil locked in North Slope shale. The company will begin drilling an exploration well along the Dalton Highway about 40 miles south of Prudhoe Bay. In June, it plans to hydraulically fracture that vertical well, using water, chemicals and sand to crack and hold open rock so oil flows from the shale. A production test to determine how the well oil flows is also expected this summer. Headlamp wishes Accumulate well in their endeavors as more oil in the pipeline benefits all Alaskans. 

Fracking is good business. Schlumberger plans to bring its entire fleet of hydraulic fracturing equipment back into service this year and ramp up hiring as it seeks to capitalize on the renewed shale boom. The company managed to swing back to profitability in the first quarter of the year thanks to its US fracking business.

More offshore drilling, please. President Donald Trump will sign a series of executive orders this week on offshore drilling, cybersecurity, veteran’s affairs and agriculture, according to sources familiar with the administration’s plans. Between the President and Alaska’s congressional delegation, Headlamp is crossing our fingers and hoping to see offshore drilling opportunities back on the horizon soon.

Much ado about nothing. The Alaska Gasline Port Authority told federal regulators Monday that Hilcorp Alaska’s problems over the winter support the argument that it would be a mistake to end the proposed 800-mile pipeline in Nikiski along the inlet. Larry Persily, oil and gas adviser to Mayor Mike Navarre of the Kenai Peninsula Borough said the Authority’s comparison is off-base. Hilcorp’s gas line was installed in the 1960’s. The Alaska LNG project has planned to coat the large gas pipeline with about 6 inches of protective concrete for its Cook Inlet crossing. Headlamp reminds AGPA, just because you want something to be, doesn’t make it so. 

One fish, two fish. Public pushback persuaded Chugach Electric Association to punt on its proposal to build a $500 million-plus hydropower project on the Snow River only four months into a decade long process. The Anchorage electric cooperative announced late Thursday that it is canceling further study of a concept to dam the Snow River near Seward, which is the feeder system to Kenai Lake and the upper reaches of the Kenai watershed.


First Reads

Explorer plans first test of oil potential in Prudhoe Bay shale

Alaska Dispatch News, Alex DeMarban, April 24, 2017

Chugach kills Snow River hydropower study

Alaska Journal of Commerce, Elwood Brehmer, April 24, 2017

Cook Inlet gas leak shows why Alaska LNG route must end in Valdez, group says

Alaska Dispatch News, Alex DeMarban, April 24, 2017

Trump to sign executive orders on drilling, cybersecurity and a rural America task force

Politico, Andrew Restuccia, April 23, 2017

For Schlumberger, U.S. fracking business spurs hiring, prices

Fuel Fix, Collin Eaton, April 21, 2017