This post is a review and commentary on the book World Atlas of Oil and Gas Basins by Li Gouyu, John Wiley & Sons Ltd. March 2011, ISBN-978-0-470-65661-7.
The greatest obstacle in the way of new investment and development on the North Slope or the mythical gas pipeline is the Alaska's tax regime.
Simply stating that Alaska's tax burden on Oil Companies is undue is a nebulous statement that has no weight if not backed up by numerical evidence other than to alienate oneself from every Democrat within earshot. Everyone can agree that by virtue of their fiduciary responsibility to shareholders, E&P companies have a vested interest in minimizing their tax burden. Therefore it it is a clear conflict of interest for the latter to directly dictate the taxation structure.
The case made in this piece is that Alaska's tax structure is exceedingly heavy and over the past 30 years, been subject to frequent change - particularly in the last decade. The amount of take specified by any particular tax regime is less of an issue than the frequent change in when it comes to encouraging investment. Alaska's North Slope has been called a geologist's dream and an investor's nightmare. This is not the bitter complaints of a brash CEO but rather a accurate reflection of reality.
I grew up with fire, ice and North Slope Crude in my veins. I completed a B.S. in Petroleum Engineering and currently work as a field engineer in the Bakken.