Below is U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan’s latest ad focusing on natural gas production in the Cook Inlet. In the ad, Sullivan is taking credit for helping bring to life what was considered a “dead” basin. “Companies were leaving. Energy production was declining” he says. “But instead of giving up, we stood strong and turned this basin into a source of new energy for Alaska. Creating jobs and opportunity, increasing investment in energy security for Alaskans.”
All of that is true, technically. There is a lot of optimism about future gas supplies, and much of the reason for the optimism results from a bill, penned with Sullivan’s help, in 2010 that gave generous tax incentives to companies to explore for gas in the basin. That said, as of yet, there’s been no overall net increase in the production in the Inlet. In fact, from 2003 to 2010, production has dropped nearly in half, from about 202 million MCF to 130 million MCF, according to the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. In 2013, it dropped to a precariously low 107 million MCF. However, there is a tremendous amount of activity in the Cook Inlet that wasn’t there before 2010. And going from exploration to production can take years.