Houston-based Aurora Gas, LLC. announced Wednesday that it will soon have more natural gas available for Cook Inlet consumers.
The company now operates five gas fields, all on the west side of the inlet, and will be adding 20 million cubic feet of natural gas per day to its total production.
Aurora Gas produces a little less than 10 percent of the total amount produced in the inlet basin on a daily basis, according to Scott Pfoff, president and chief operating officer for Aurora.
Pfoff said there were times last winter when the demand of natural gas was so high that producers were forced to reduce the supply.
"We are not even halfway through the work we plan to do and we have added a significant amount of (gas) production to the system prior to this coming winter," Pfoff said in a press release.
"Even quantities like this make a big difference," he said in an interview.
The new gas will come from three fields. One of the fields, called the Three Mile Creek Unit, was an exploratory well that was started in December 2004. Aurora found more gas at Moquawkie and Lone Creek Units, the other two fields, drilling development wells.
In addition, the company has applied for permits to drill more wells in some of its other fields, the press release said.
A development well is drilled when a company is trying to produce more gas from an existing gas field.
All of this gas will be consumed by Southcentral Alaska gas customers, including Agrium, Pfoff said.
Of the five natural gas producers in the region, Pfoff said Aurora is the smallest. However, he said it is an attractive area for companies to explore for gas.
"The basin is largely underdeveloped," he said. "There's relatively little competition."
On the flip side, he said, it is an expensive place to do business.
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