The state has approved a right-of-way lease agreement for the Alaska Stand Alone Pipeline, the in-state gas project which has the approval of the Alaska State House.
Department of Natural Resources commissioner Dan Sullivan last week signed an agreement with the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation, which was tasked by the legislature with developing a plan for the in-state gasline. The agreement grants access to state land for potential development of the 737-mile natural gas pipeline from the North Slope to Big Lake.
Dave Norton is manager of Engineering and Regulatory Affairs for AGDC. He says the state lease is for 427 miles, more than half the length of the proposed gasline.
Norton says AGDC is in the middle of an environmental impact statement process now:
If approved, a final EIS will be out by the end of the year, he says. The Army Corps of Engineers must issue the Record of Decision which will approve wetlands permits necessary for gasline construction. The state agreement does not cover the entire length of the line, however. Norton says additional agreements must still be signed with Alaska Native corporations, federal and private lands the gasline would traverse if it is built.
The proposed natural gasline would run from Prudhoe Bay along the Dalton Highway and TAPS route to Livengood, then head south across Minto Flats then to the Parks Highway near Nenana. Then follow the highway to connect to the Beluga gasline from the west side of Cook Inlet. Gas would then be provided for the local distribution system. Another spur line running from Nenana would provide gas to Fairbanks.
AGDC president Dan Fauske has signed the lease agreement. Fauske calls the right of way deal a “major milestone” in the progress made on the project.