Bloomberg News

Alaska Oil Output Drops 11% as North Slope Production Declines

July 03, 2012

Alaska crude-oil production dropped 11 percent in June from a year earlier, the largest drop in almost a year, after Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., operator of the cross-state pipeline system, conducted maintenance and as output from wells declined.

Production averaged 516,871 barrels a day last month, down from 581,297 a year earlier, the biggest decline since output fell 15 percent from July 2010 to July 2011, the state Department of Revenue said on its website. The pipeline delivered 570,770 barrels a day in May.

Production peaked for the month at 592,381 barrels on June 12 and fell to a low of 380,893 on June 2, when crews scheduled valve testing.

“Any fluctuations in throughput are due to planned maintenance,” Michelle Egan, a spokeswoman at Alyeska, said in an e-mailed response to questions.

Output on the 800-mile (1,287-kilometer) Trans-Alaska crude system has declined annually since 2002 as falling yield from existing wells hasn’t been replaced, according to the state tax division. Crude-oil output from Prudhoe Bay averaged 305,132 barrels per day in June, down from 324,919 in May, the state said.

Alaskan North Slope crude strengthened $3.60 to $102.85 a barrel, $15.50 a barrel above the U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate at 11:41 a.m. New York time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Inventories of the feedstock at the Valdez marine terminal averaged 4.7 million barrels last month, ranging from 3.84 million on June 16 to 5.49 million June 1, according to the revenue department.

Alyeska is owned by BP Pipelines (Alaska), ConocoPhillips Transportation Alaska, ExxonMobil Pipeline Co., Unocal Pipeline Co., and Koch Alaska Pipeline Co.

To contact the reporter on this story: Colin McClelland in Toronto at cmcclelland1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net


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