Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Alaska Gasline Port Authority Looks To Asian Markets
As Alaska moves forward with plans for natural gas pipeline through Canada to the Lower 48, some industry groups said it's heading in the wrong direction.
It’s been nearly four years since state officials announced plans for a TransCanada natural gas pipeline.
The project would carry natural gas from North Slope oil fields through Canada to markets in the Lower 48, but industry leaders said the project is heading in the wrong direction—literally.
"Everybody that has even a molecule of gas are trying to figure out how to get it together, make it into liquefaction and get it into the Asian market,” said Bill Walker, general counsel to the Alaska Gasline Port Authority.
Walker sees one problem with the plan to market Alaska natural gas in the continental U.S: There are no markets in the continental U.S.
According to federal energy officials, the Lower 48 possesses more than 100 years worth of natural gas reserves, and there are currently 12 different LNG projects in various stages of development throughout the U.S. and British Columbia.
A recent report by consulting firm Wood Mackenzie claims exporting LNG to Japan and other Asian countries could earn the state roughly $400 billion over a 30-year period.
By piping gas to shipping terminals in Valdez, only 3,000 nautical miles from Japan, Walker said Alaska would be poised to the countries leading energy exporter.
“We need to take control and say, ‘our gas needs to go to the Asian market,’” Walker said. “Period."