The Monopod platform is one of Union Oil Company of California's Kenai Peninsula properties.
Clarion file photo by Doug Loshbaugh
Anyone who calls 776-6868, the local contact number for the Union Oil Co. of California Kenai Peninsula operations, formerly called Unocal, is now greeted with a message from ChevronTexaco Corp., a San Ramon, Calif.-based company.
After bidding from ChevronTexaco Corp. and the China National Offshore Oil Co. through the summer of 2005, Unocal stockholders approved the merger of the two energy companies in August.
The merger brought speculation that the company’s Cook Inlet operations could be sold.
Union Oil Co. of California still has no comment on the future of its Alaska assets, but interested companies may include Marathon Oil, Aurora Gas LLC and Forest Oil Corp. on the natural gas side and Forest Oil or XTO Energy on the gas side.
How the merger will affect the company’s gas storage projects, including those intended to store gas at the Pretty Creek gas field on Cook Inlet’s west side and on the east side in the Swanson River field is unknown.
In October, the company told its Alaska employees that its future plans would be made public in March.
In response to questions about the company’s outlook for 2006, Public Relations Manager Roxanne Sinz responded via e-mail.
“I am unable to discuss strategy or exploration at this time,” she wrote.
Sinz did say in October that the storage projects have been put on hold during the evaluation process.
The peninsula, then, is in wait-and-see mode when it comes to Unocal’s Chevron-owned assets.
Union Oil Co. of California operates 10 platforms in Cook Inlet and six natural gas fields. The company is the largest producer in Cook Inlet and it owns some $237.5 million worth of taxable property in the borough.
Headquarters: El Segundo, Calif.
Alaska general manager: John Zager
Local contact: 776-6868
Employees: 401, with 100 on the Kenai Peninsula
2005 production: 7,099 barrels of oil per day net (including Swanson River Field), 69 million cubic feet per day of natural gas
Reserves: 1.75 billion barrels of oil-equivalent (Unocal)
Company outlook: In 2005, Unocal’s assets were purchased by Chevron Corporation. All of Unocal’s Alaska operations are now run by Chevron. In 2006, the Union Oil Co. of California will continue Cook Inlet and Kenai Peninsula production, with forecasts putting production around 6,409 barrels of oil per day.
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