North Slope oil production is running above last year based on new data from the Alaska Department of Revenue. Based on preliminary information, production from the slope has averaged 527,000 barrels per day for the state’s Fiscal Year 2017, the budget year that ended June 30.
”It’s definitely a year-over-year increase,” said Dan Stickel, chief petroleum economist at the revenue department.
The figures are up from a 514,900 b/d average for FY 2016, the 12-month period, which ended June 30, 2016, and 501,000 b/d for the previous year, FY 2015.
The FY 2017 increase would be the second year in which output climbed for the North Slope, and it appears to have ended, at least temporarily, a long slide in slope production, which was at 2 million b/d in 1988.
How long it can be sustained is uncertain, however. Although crude oil prices are down, North Slope operators are still getting the benefit of new projects began during high price years in 2014 and 2015, state officials said.