Scoping comments on the Nanushuk Project • Before U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Testimony provided by Carl Portman • March 28, 2016 • Anchorage, AK

 

Good evening. My name is Carl Portman, Deputy Director of the Resource Development Council (RDC). RDC is supportive of the Nanushuk project, which could ultimately prove to be one of the largest fields discovered on the North Slope.  

RDC is a statewide, non-profit, business association comprised of individuals and companies from Alaska’s oil and gas, mining, timber, tourism and fisheries industries.  Our membership also includes Native regional and village corporations, local governments, organized labor and industry support firms.  RDC’s mission is to help grow Alaska’s economy through the responsible development of natural resources.

New oil production from Nanushuk could add up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day into the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System, Alaska’s economic life-line that is now running at three-quarters empty. TAPS and Alaska desperately need more oil production and Nanushuk has the potential to deliver significant new volumes.

The $5 billion project is a vital to Alaska’s depressed economy. Nanushuk could be one of the most significant discoveries on the North Slope since the discovery of Kuparuk and Alpine fields.

The project would generate significant long-term economic activity with up to 600 North Slope construction jobs and at least 60 direct jobs in Anchorage. For each direct oil industry job, 20 additional jobs are generated across the Alaska economy.

Given the Nanushuk project is located near existing infrastructure, environmental impacts are likely to be minimal. With evolving improvements in technology, best practices, and oversight, the industry has demonstrated that North Slope energy development and environmental stewardship can and do coexist.

In conclusion, RDC is confident this project can move forward in a way that protects the environment, wildlife, and the subsistence needs of local residents. The project has the potential to significantly boost TAPS throughput, create new jobs, generate needed revenues to the North Slope Borough, the state, and federal government, while reducing America’s dependence on imported oil. These and other major economic benefits of the Nanushuk project to Alaska and the nation should be fully acknowledged in the proposed environmental impact statement.

RDC is confident the Nanushuk project can be developed in a responsible and safe manner. Thank you for the opportunity to express our support for this important project.