Morning Headlamp — New oil and gas potential found in Alaska

Between a rock and a hard place. Geologists say a potential major oil discovery in Alaska, coupled with a state geological analysis released this summer, indicate that an often-overlooked rock formation on the North Slope may hold significant potential for future oil discoveries. The Nanushuk formation, an underground layer of rocks deposited from eroding mountains about 100 million years ago have qualities for oil and gas. Nanushuk has been penetrated by dozens of wells — the formation is one of the first rock layers that a drill bit pierced in the National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska — longtime geologists say decades of drilling has led to only minor discoveries.

Armstrong calls the project Nanushuk, the same name as the rock formation holding the oil. The plan is currently under environmental review by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It will take at least five years before oil production begins, if permitting and financing efforts are successful.

Headlamp hopes that Alaska doesn’t squander this major find.  With the LNG project in a holding pattern – this project could be the one that provides not only jobs and investment into Alaska’s economy – but the most revenue to the state in coming years. 

The surplus in global oil markets will last for longer than previously thought, persisting into late 2017 as demand growth slumps and supply proves resilient, the International Energy Agency said. World oil stockpiles will continue to accumulate through 2017, a fourth consecutive year of oversupply, according to the IEA. Consumption growth sagged to a two-year low in the third quarter as demand faltered in China and India, while record output from OPEC’s Gulf members is compounding the glut, it said. Just last month the agency predicted the market would return to equilibrium this year.


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First Reads

Overlooked North Slope formation may hold 120,000-barrel-a-day secret
Alaska Dispatch News, Alex DeMarban, September 13, 2016

Edison Chouest to be introduced at PWSRCAC meeting
The Cordova Times, September 13, 2016

Alaskan Governor meets with Japan’s METI and JOGMEC to discuss LNG
LNG Industry, September 13, 2016

IEA Changes View on Oil Glut, Sees Surplus Enduring in 2017
Bloomberg, Grant Smith, September 13, 2016