HJR 22: Strongly encouraging the United States Secretary of the Interior to conduct additional competitive oil and gas lease sales within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.
00 HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 22 01 Strongly encouraging the United States Secretary of the Interior to conduct additional 02 competitive oil and gas lease sales within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. 03 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 04 WHEREAS, in 1923, President Warren G. Harding issued an Executive Order 05 establishing Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 4 on the North Slope of Alaska to provide a 06 potential supply of oil for the United States Navy; and 07 WHEREAS the Reserve encompasses 23,500,000 acres, with boundaries extending 08 due south from Icy Cape to the drainage divide of the Brooks Range, then following the 09 divide eastward to 156 degrees west longitude, then north to the Colville River, and following 10 the Colville River downstream to its mouth; and 11 WHEREAS, between 1944 and 1976, the United States Navy drilled 45 shallow core- 12 test holes and 43 test wells and acquired nearly 11,100 line miles of seismic reflection data, 13 nearly 400 seismic reaction profiles, gravity data from more than 36,000 stations, and 12,000 14 flight line miles of seromagnetic data; and 15 WHEREAS the Naval Petroleum Reserves Production Act of 1976, P.L. 94-258, 90 16 Stat. 303, 42 U.S.C. 6501 et seq., redesignated Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 4 as the National
01 Petroleum Reserve-Alaska and transferred responsibility for its administration to the United 02 States Secretary of the Interior; and 03 WHEREAS, between 1975 and 1982, the United States Geological Survey drilled 28 04 wells and acquired some 5,700 line miles of seismic survey and gravity data from more than 05 27,000 stations, which established several areas of oil and gas potential; and 06 WHEREAS discovery well Walakpa 1 showed a potentially economic gas reservoir, 07 which was confirmed by Walakpa 2; and 08 WHEREAS an amendment to the Naval Petroleum Reserves Production Act made by 09 the FY 1981 Department of the Interior Appropriations Act, P.L. 96-514, Title I, 94 Stat. 10 2964, directed the Secretary of the Interior to develop a fast-track oil and gas development 11 initiative intended to lease up to 2,000,000 acres of the Reserve for oil and gas exploration; 12 and 13 WHEREAS, under the 1981 authorization, between 1982 and 1984, the United States 14 Department of the Interior conducted four competitive lease sales, receiving $119,000,000 in 15 bonus bids; and 16 WHEREAS the recently announced development of the Alpine oil and gas field in the 17 Colville River Delta and potentially extending under the eastern extremities of the National 18 Petroleum Reserve-Alaska has generated renewed interest in competitive oil and gas leasing 19 in the Reserve; and 20 WHEREAS, in May 1999, following the Alpine field activities, the first federal lease 21 sale in the Reserve since 1984 saw 3,900,000 acres offered for bid in the Northeast quarter of 22 the Reserve, bringing $104,000,000 in bonus bids on tracts; and 23 WHEREAS a June 2002 reoffering of unsold tracts brought $64,000,000 in bids for 24 60 tracts; and 25 WHEREAS, since the sales in the Reserve during the 1980s, significant progress has 26 been made in the areas of seismic sequence analysis, amplitude analysis, geological modeling, 27 and directional and long-reach drilling, and information has become available to potential 28 bidders that supports the belief that the Reserve could contain economic quantities of oil and 29 gas; and 30 WHEREAS bonus bids received from competitive oil and gas lease sales in the 31 National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska and royalties generated from oil and gas production in it
01 would be shared equally by the United States and the State of Alaska through prior 02 agreement; and 03 WHEREAS, during the last three decades of oil production on the North Slope of 04 Alaska, the industry has developed state-of-the-art technology that has demonstrated 05 environmentally safe production with a minimum of adverse impact; and 06 WHEREAS exploration and development will be conducted in a manner consistent 07 with the state's ongoing commitment to protecting the environment and utilizing its work 08 force to the maximum extent possible; and 09 WHEREAS, the application of this advanced technology in the Reserve affords the 10 opportunity to further demonstrate that oil exploration and production are being done in an 11 environmentally sensitive manner; and 12 WHEREAS oil production from Alaska's North Slope is declining; and 13 WHEREAS more than half of the oil consumed each day in the United States is 14 imported from foreign countries; and 15 WHEREAS the discovery and development of commercial quantities of oil in the 16 National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska would enhance domestic energy security and reduce 17 dependence on foreign oil; 18 BE IT RESOLVED by the Alaska State Legislature that the United States Secretary 19 of the Interior is strongly encouraged to take immediate action to conduct additional 20 competitive oil and gas lease sales within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska to allow for 21 exploration and development of oil and gas resources; and be it 22 FURTHER RESOLVED that this statement of support for reestablishing competitive 23 oil and gas leasing in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska does not in any way diminish 24 the legislature's continued strong support for opening the coastal plain of the Arctic National 25 Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, including the special study area identified in sec. 1002 of the Alaska 26 National Interest Lands Conservation Act, P.L. 96-487, 94 Stat. 2371, to oil and gas 27 exploration, development, and production. 28 COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Gale Norton, United States 29 Secretary of the Interior; Drue Pearce, Senior Advisor to the Secretary for Alaska Affairs, 30 U.S. Department of the Interior; and the Honorable Ted Stevens and the Honorable Lisa 31 Murkowski, U.S. Senators, and the Honorable Don Young, U.S. Representative, members of
01 the Alaska delegation in Congress.