I had the pleasure of attending a meeting sponsored by the Alaska Stand Alone Gas Pipeline group. Not many people attended but
was very informative. One question in my mind is why has it taken 30-plus years to get natural gas to Fairbanks and south where it is so vital.
Of the hundred of thousands of maintenance personel working for the energy companies, who at one time or other were handed a work request with the statement that we need this "As Soon as Possible"? As I look at this problem, it must be a lack of the politicians taking care of their electorate. Usually finding things within their districts would bring many more votes than a state wide project. It has been given tons of lip service with the oil companies, but the oil companies know that the U.S. is the safest place in the world to get oil and can wait forever if necessary. That is why I and some of my friends think it is time to get off the pot and invest in the people of "Alaska."
If when all of the billions of dollars started flowing into the state when the pipeline started flowing had been used to build a pipeline like this group is talking about, it would have been built for about 25 percent of what it will cost today. I know there are pipeline companies today who would love to be offered a chance to build it. "If" it had been built, the LNG plant would be operating and maybe been expanded. The Union Chemical Plant which I started working for in California in 1955 would be employing 350 employees instead of being in moth balls. We knew in the mid 1980s that the incoming gas pressure was going down and that at some point would need more. But it was totally ignored until the shutdown of most of the industry in Nikiski.
I plan to follow the progress of this group to see what happens.