Through coordination with the communities in which we work and rigorous adherence to safe operations, the partners of the Liberty Project will create the jobs of today while strengthening Alaska’s energy future.
What are the economic benefits of Liberty?
Liberty will provide important tax and economic benefits to the federal government, the State of Alaska and communities across the North Slope. The project will generate construction jobs — primarily for Alaskans — and good-paying permanent jobs, and will create opportunities for many Alaska businesses across the state.
Will the residents of the North Slope benefit from Liberty?
Absolutely. The Liberty Project will establish near-term construction jobs and spur new investment in the region. New oil development will increase local tax revenue and throughput of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System, supporting long-term investments throughout the North Slope. All three of the Liberty partners are heavily involved in Alaska’s communities, both through the jobs they create and the ways in which they give back.
Hilcorp Alaska provides financial resources for young people to pursue college opportunities and encourages and facilitates philanthropy among its employees. Through its generous corporate philanthropy, scholarship programs and the exceptional Hilcorp Giving Program, Hilcorp has proved to be an outstanding corporate citizen and philanthropic leader in every community in which it has operations.
BP’s Alaska employees supported more than 800 community and education initiatives, along with 230 youth teams. Over the past 30 years, BP has awarded more than $3.5 million to 800 graduating high school seniors from across the state as part of the Principals’ and Commissioner’s Scholarship program.
Since 2000 ASRC has distributed more than $90 million to support a wide range of socio-economic opportunities. From 2005-2009, ASRC donated nearly $15 million to nonprofit, charitable causes. ASRC also makes investments in its Native community through two nonprofit organizations, the Arctic Slope Community Foundation and the Arctic Education Foundation.
Why construct a gravel island?
While numerous alternatives were assessed for the Liberty development plan, artificial gravel islands have a long track record for safe operations. The shallow offshore environment is an ideal candidate for the Liberty’s gravel based island development.
What is a gravel island?
Construction of the island will begin with gravel poured through the water column to the sea floor, building the island structure from the bottom up. The footprint of the base of the island on the seafloor will be approximately 24 acres. Island slope protection will assure the integrity of the structure by protecting it from the erosive forces of waves, ice ride-up, and ocean currents. The proposed Liberty Island will utilize linked concrete mat armor and (steel reinforced) vertical walls to further protect the structure from ice and wave impacts. Linked concrete mat armor and vertical walls have been successfully used at other islands in the Beaufort Sea, and is similar to that at Northstar Production Island.
Is the technology safe?
Yes. The Liberty Project will utilize the construction and operational technology perfected at Alaska’s other offshore facilities. These artificial islands are proven safe and effective means for oil and gas development in the Arctic. As with the Liberty Project, the majority of the artificial islands are situated in shallow water depths of less than 20 feet.
Do other islands like the one you are proposing exist?
Yes, artificial islands in Alaska’s Beaufort Sea date back to the mid-1970s. In the last 40 years, 18 islands have been constructed for exploration and/or development of oil and gas off the coast of Alaska. The majority of the artificial islands were constructed in shallow water depths of less than 20 feet.
Does the winter pack ice pose a danger to the production island?
The industry has learned a great deal about how to safely operate in sea ice over the last 40 years. Liberty will incorporate ice-shielding technologies that have proven very effective at other offshore facilities.
Is it safe to transport oil via subsea pipeline?
Yes, transporting oil via pipeline is the safest way to deliver oil to TAPS. The subsea pipeline proposed for Liberty is similar to the one in service at Northstar, which has safely operated for over 14 years. The line will be buried and will incorporate a pipe-in-pipe technology, in which a smaller line that carries the crude oil will be enclosed within a larger line. The sub-sea section of the pipeline will employ a leak-detection system that monitors pressure, volume and temperatures to detect any system irregularities or issues.
How much oil will you recover from Liberty?
It is estimated that Liberty has 80-150 million barrels of recoverable oil. Peak production of between 60,000 and 70,000 barrels/day is projected within two years of initial production. The field has a life expectancy of 15 to 20 years.
Will it benefit the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System?
Yes. Development of these resources will help offset declining oil production on the North Slope and contribute to increasing the life span and efficiency of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System. New oil is needed to keep the pipeline operating efficiently now that throughput is less than 25 percent of capacity. An additional 60,000-70,000 BOPD from Liberty will be an important addition to keeping the pipeline operational for decades to come.