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Taking advantage of early spring cleaning Spur gas line is same plan, different year

Editorial

Posted: Friday, November 30, 2007

Today is the deadline for applica-tions to build a natural gas pipeline in Alaska.

We are quite pleased to see the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority ANGDA jump into the mix.

ANGDA is putting together its own proposal for a spur line to connect with a main line a project that would hook into the main pipe at either Delta Junction or Glennallen and carry gas to Cook Inlet.

What a great concept.

Wait. Haven't we heard this somewhere before?

Oh yeah, repeatedly over the years. Unfortunately, it has a history of going nowhere.

Despite its popularity with residents of the Kenai Peninsula and the optimism of Harold Heinze, ANGDA's chief executive, this concept can't seem to hook up the right connections.

Heinze says the spur could be a lifeline for Southcentral, siphoning off some of the large gas shipments headed out and using it to heat and light homes and businesses in the area.

"We looked for where we could contribute. The spur line became a very logical focus," Heinze said.

Obviously the project isn't totally out of steam since pipeline company MidAmerican has said it also planned to submit an application with two undisclosed partners.

Still, former Gov. Frank Murkowski was unable to strike a fiscal terms agreement with the North Slope leaseholders ExxonMobil, BP PLC and ConocoPhillips. Now Gov. Sarah Palin has moved the gas line to the top of her list and opened it up to smaller players, like ANGDA.

Maybe it will make a difference.

We've heard the talk. We'd be shocked to see some action. We hope this time it's not just another pipe dream.



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