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VI~O~M~TAL B~FO~M~TBO~ FOR OUTGO COT SHELF OlL ID Gels D~ces~o~s I~ ALASKA

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1 '~T~ODUCTBO~ though Alaska has magnificent scenery and bountiful natural resources, its remoteness and harsh climate can make it an expensive and difficult place to work, and much of Alaska's enormous of} and natural gas resources remain undeveloped. Indeed, until the discovery of the superg~anti Pru~hoe Bay oil field in the late 1960s, Alaska's of! and gas were almost untapped. But the Pru~hoe Bay field was so larger 12 billion barrels (1 barrel contains 42 U.S. gallons) have been produced to date, and it has total recoverable reserves of 20 billion barrels-it justified the engineering feat of the Trans- Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) to bring the oil to market. That pipeline, in turn, has made previously uneconomical discoveries potentially worth developing if the oil can be brought to the head of the pipeline in Pru~hoe Bay. Nevertheless, the remoteness and great expense of producing of} from Alaska's outer continental shelf (OCS) requires that only large finds with reserves of perhaps hundreds of millions of barrels or more can be expected to be produced and delivered to the pipeline in the foreseeable future. The potential for adverse impacts to the human and marine environment also neec s to be factored into decisions wad respect to of! development. The most visible and controversial impacts are those associated with accidental oil spills, despite the fact that offshore exploration and production account ~ Although there is no hard and fast rule for categorizing oil-field size, the most user (and generally accepted) scale is small, < 50 million barrels; large, 50-500 million barrels; giant, SOD million to 5 billion barrels; and supergiant, ~5 billion barrels (Fitzgerald, 19801. 1 1

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12 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA for only about I% of oil released into the ocean each year (NRC, 1985; GESA~, 1992~. The 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, California, brought to public awareness the potential for harm caused by oil and gas exploration and drilling on the OCS. In the next two decades, two more spills the 1979 IXTOC I blowout off Mexico's coast and the 1989 Exxon Chavez tanker accident in Alaska's Prince William Sound-reinforced the public perception that potential environmental damage results from spilled oil. The effects of crude-oi} spills in temperate marine environments are fairly weld understood after 25 years of field and laboratory research. And even though the Exxon Vaklez accident did not involve OCS oil, the magnitude of the spill (approximately 262 thousand barrels of North Slope crude oil) greatly influenced the national debate on the production of OCS oil and prompted even greater scrutiny of potential lease sales in Alaska. Whatever the actual impacts of spilled oil are, the emotional response to the possibility of spills is a significant factor in of} leasing and development considerations in Alaska. THIS STUDY AND POST In balancing Be economic benefits of petroleum production against tile potential for environmental damage, Congress and the Executive Branch can benefit from sound scientific assessments. Accordingly, Be Minerals Management Service (MMS) of the Department of the Interior (DOT) requested this study as a result of fiscal year 1991's department appropria- tions report in which Be U.S. House of Representatives recommended Mat MMS request the National Research Council (NRC) of Be National Academy of Sciences to assess Be adequacy of environmental information relevant to Free Alaskan lease sales planned for 1991: Sale 126 (Chukchi Sea), Sale 124 (Beautort Sea), and Sale 107 (Navarin Basin) (see Figure A-. In response, the NRC's Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology and its Board on Earn Sciences and Resources formed Be Committee to Review Alaskan Outer Continental Shelf Environmental Information. The committee was made up of experts in geology, hydrocarbon resource assessment, oceanography, ice dynamics, spill response, ecology, biology, sociology, anthropology, and resource economics. It was to review information about Be Resee to which the sales in die three lease sale areas differed from Rose in OCS areas in which development and production have

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INTRODUCTION 13 ~X~ Ritz BY ~ ~''1 \ ~, / / // so' ki / -/ - 44~ _ ~ OCS PLANNING AREAS / t ~L BEAuFoR~\ \ : - .o ~\ ~- >- ~o- ~7_ 18.~. 1R ~scat 1.Ct)e 144 ~i38 13\ 12(S Matzo air> OCR for page 9
14 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA lower in the Navarin Basin (in Me Bering Sea) Man it was in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. Ir~eed, in 1992, after the committee began its work, Sale 107 (Navarin Basin) was canceled and deferred for fur&er review until 1996 (MMS, 1992a). Therefore, this report focuses more on Be Chukchi and Beaufort seas Man it does on the Bering Sea. The Bering Sea is not completely excluded, however, because it was in the committee's charge, because it has been studied extensively, because it has biological and physical influences on the Chukchi Sea and (to a lesser extent) on the Beautort Sea, because ships supporting development in Me Chukchi and Beaulort seas pass Trough Be Bering Sea, and because it is possible that industry will reevaluate its interest in the area at some future time. The committee recognizes that MMS's Environmental Studies Program (ESP) is not intended to be a broad, general science program like that of Be National Science FourK ation. Rawer, it is a mission-oriented program, de- signed to answer questions about Be environmental effects-including socioeconomic effects-of oil and gas exploration and production. None- theless, the answers to those questions must be based on sound science. The committee used many resources in its work, including presentations from ESP staff; briefings by independent scientists familiar wig Be work supported by ESP; and discussions with Alaska Native leaders and wad representatives of industry, environmental organizations, state government, and odler interested parties at meetings in Barrow and Anchorage, Alaska. It toured facilities operate by ARCO, British Petroleum, and Alaska Clean Seas in the Pru&oe Bay area and was briefed by scientists and technical experts from those organizations. It received briefings from industry repre- sentatives at a meeting in Irvine, California. It also reviewed relevant scientific literature and documentation of the MMS planning and implemen- tation process that leads to lease sales. The committee reviewed earlier NRC reports on the adequacy of environmental information for OCS de- cisions in California and Florida (NRC, 1989a) and in Georges Bank, Massachusetts (NRC, 1991a); reports of the Physical Oceanography Pane} (NRC, 1990a), the Ecology Panel (NRC, 1992a), the Socioeconomics Pane} (NRC, 1992b), and the final report of the full committee assessing ESP (NRC, 1993a); a report on Be adequacy of the data base for petroleum hydrocarbon estimates of He Georges Bank area of tile Norm Atlantic OCS (NRC, 199Ob); and an evaluation of DOI's 1989 assessment procedures for undiscovered oil and gas resources (NRC, 199Ib). It also reviewed Be Environmental Impact Statements and Secretarial Issue Documents, geological reports, and over products of Be ESP. As background, the committee reviewed MMS documents that were

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INTRODUCFlON 15 available through 1992, over NRC reports, materials provided by industry and interest groups, as well as other materials available to professional scientists. MMS has informed the committee that the ESP continues to evolve, and recent requests for proposals confirm that. MMS officials have also indicated that they are taking into account recommendations made in the reports mentioned above. Criteria for Adeaaac The committee concurs with previous NRC panels' operational definition of adequacy as it pertains to scientific information (NRC, 1989a, 199Oa, 1991a, 1992a,b, 1993a). This definition, reviewed below, has two aspects: completeness and scientific quality. ComoIeteness Because the body of scientific information grows continuously through research and discovery, completeness requires appropriate breadth and depth of basic scientific information in all relevant disciplines needed to illuminate the environments risks associated with OCS oil and gas develop- ment. The criteria for completeness within disciplines for the three lease sales are described in Me chapters that deal with the physical environment (Chapter 4), biotic resources (Chapter 5), and the human environment (Chapter 6~. Scientific Qualms The standards of scientific quality are repeatability, reliability, and validity of measurements and analyses, and they include the appropriateness of methods and subject. The working definition of scientific quality used by the committee was whether the methods described represent the current state of good practice in each scientific field; that is, whether Me methods would be likely to pass peer review. That does not mean Mat actual publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal is required, but rather Mat the quality of Me data and of the scientific interpretations used for OCS leasing decisions should meet this basic scientific standard.

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16 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA AuaIlca~on of the Standard Although adequacy, or how much science is enough, can be defined for scientific purposes as outlined above, decisions must account for scientific uncertainty in the processes of assessing risks and in making predictions. How much uncertainty is acceptable for decision making is related to the state of the science, the perceived value of the resource or activity being considered, the nature of the risk, and public concern. The issue is how to balance the need to reduce uncertainty against the increased costs in time and money of doing the science required. The process of determining how much science is sufficient for decision making about a lease should account for what kind of scientific knowledge will provide decision makers with an assessment of the potential environ- mental effects and risks~including the range of uncertain~associated wig of! and gas exploration and developments. The definition of adequacy and the specifics of adequacy in the case of Be three relevant lease sales discussed in this repartees not address an ideal, but rather a minimum, essential amount of data or knowledge that is appropriate for informed decisions with respect to these lease-sale areas. The committee has evaluated only Be adequacy of Be scientific information as it provides Be basis for informed decisions. It was not charged wig evaluating the actual effects of OCS oil and gas development and produc- tion, and it has not done so here. The biological effects of specific OCS activities and He long-term effects of of! and gas development have been reviewed extensively elsewhere (for example, see NRC 1983a, 1985, 1989c; Boesch and Rabalais, 1987; Engelhardt, 19XSa,b; COGLA, 1985a; GES AMP, 1992~. 12ePor' Organization In this report, the committee focuses on what environmental information is needed to make of} and gas leasing decisions and if additional information is needed, determines the approximate time and financial cost involved in obtaining additional information. It also addresses how Hat information would improve He ability to predict and manage environmental effects of OCS of! and gas activities, and if applicable, determines the alternatives to obtaining Hat additional information. Each chapter of the report contains

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INTRODUCTION 17 its specific conclusions ant! recommendations. In many cases, the commit- tee was unable to estimate time ant} cost with confidence. Therefore, in those cases, estimates were not proviclecI. Chapter 2 describes operations. It reviews the physical effects of arctic industrial activity. Chapter 3 considers the geological setting and the resource base for of} arm nature gas. It reviews the general ant! petroleum geology of the areas in question, the adequacy of the geological cIata base, the adequacy and reliability of resource assessments, and engineering geology. Chapter 4 considers the physical environment. It reviews the physical oceanic characteristics of the arctic region uncler consideration, ant! moclels of the reg~on's circulation ant! oil spill trajectories. Chapter 5 considers the biotic resources at risk, including marine mammals, bircts, fish ant} fisheries, ant} benthic organisms. Chapter 6 considers the social ant! economic environment. It reviews effects on the human environment, the distinctiveness of the high Arctic, and MMS's social ant! economic studies. Chapter 7 reviews petroleum irKlustry mitigation and remecliation actions. It discusses the dynamics of working in an environment of sea ice, and it discusses the issues involves! with cleanup of of] spills and the effectiveness of response measures. Chapter ~ presents the committee's general conclusions ant! an alternative to acIditional studies regarding the adequacy of the environmental informa- don that MMS uses to make OCS of! ant! gas exploration ant! clevelopment - c .eclslons. Appendix A describes Me environmental analyses mandated by Section IS of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act of 1952 as amended in 1978. It outlines Me federal decision-making process for establishing OCS lease sales. D[SC~IPT10~ 01 THE A~" In What ways Are Hlon Latlludes Differently Although each area where of} and gas exploration and development has occurred or is planned has its Mare of unique environmental characteristics, Me high-latitude planning areas considered here have relatively sensitive,

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18 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA remote, and hostile environments. The Arctic Research Commission (ARC, 1991) stated that "chronic environmental disturbances from both nab and human origins can create cumulative impacts on Me arctic food chain; on gas reflux of greenhouse gases; and on We integrity of Be permafrost, Bus creating serious soil erosion and potential loss of biological diversity." Brown (1984) suggested Tat a smaller disturbance is required to produce an effect in Be Arctic Wan is necessary in lower latitudes. fits during He short and intensive growing season could produce effects of great amplitude, because many arctic species are near Heir tolerance limits for energy and nutrients and, therefore, tend to reproduce and grow slowly. This presumed fragility of He Arctic ecosystem is contested by some experts on He Arctic (Dunbar, 1985~. Arctic conditions are more hazardous than those found at most OCS drilling sites (Weeks and Weller, 1984~. Sea ice, which often is present even during He summer in He Beaufort Sea, presents a major environmen- tal challenge in high-latitude of} and gas exploration and development. Deformed pack ice forms pressure ridges Hat occur more frequently in He ice over He OCS Han in ice further out to sea (Weeks and Weller, 1984~. The keels of multiyear ice ridges can cause bottom scour that can damage pipelines and over exploration and production equipment. Also, the Apes of drilling platforms necessary to withstand He pressure of pack ice are costly and can take several years to build if work is restricted to He ice-free season. The tides and currents of He Arctic are not as severe as Hose in He Gulf of Alaska or He Norm Sea, but 3-m surges have been reported. 12atlonale for [xPIorino for Oil In a Hostile Environment The Alaskan OCS is one of He few areas left where industry believes very large of} fields-perhaps as large as 10-30 billion barrels still can be found in U.S. territory. Before field exploration occurs, it is not possible to develop precise estimates of reserves in place. The uncertainty of these numbers should be recognized. It is words noting Hat total domestic de- mand for refined petroleum products in 1992 was just over 17 million barrels per day (DOE, 1993), or about 6 billion barrels per year. Thus, He 12 billion barrels of oil produced from Prudhoe to date represents slightly less Han 2 years' consumption at 1991 rates, or about 10% of domestic

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INTRODUCTION 19 consumption for 20 years. Recoverable reserves of 10~30 billion barrels from the Alaskan OCS would supply all U.S. of! for 2-5 years at current consumption rates (or about 10% of domestic consumption for 2~50 years). Although arctic of! and gas are extremely expensive to produce and transport to market, the large potential reserves offer great economic incentive for exploration and security of supply from domestic sources are considerations for proceeding with exploration. The pressure to pursue OCS of} and gas development is spurred in part by declining production from the Pru~hoe Bay field ARCO estimates it w'll decrease 8-10% annually through the year 2000 (Davis and Pollock, 19926so new reserves that can be transported through TAPS are being sought. TAPS has a finite economic and engineering lifetime, influenced by such factors as the price of oil, the amount of of} flowing through the pipeline, technology, general economic conditions, and global developments in energy technology. The General Accounting Office reviewed the Depart- ment of Energy s projections of the long-term viability for TAPS in April 1993. Its report concluded that it is not possible to pinpoint a year that TAPS will shut down. It is possible, however, to estimate a probable range of shutdown dates, 2001-2021. The variation in the range is due to uncer ainty about TAPS minimum operating level, of} price, cost estimates, and eshrnates of discovered, but non-produc~ng fields coming on line (GAO, 1993~. Because it can take 10 years from the time of a discovery until oil flows in economic quantities, it is clear Rat there is a limited opportunity for proving reserves in the Alaskan OCS if of] is to be transported to market through TAPS. Minimum economic field sizes for Alaskan OCS waters have to be larger than those for any other offshore U.S. area, which imposes furler limits to field development in this area. In 1983, the DOI issued the Arctic Summary Report, which outlined three major factors that would determine whether of! and gas exploration could occur in the Arctic: the location and size of undiscovered oil and gas resources; future energy prices; and the policies developed by Be federal government, Be State of Alaska, and the North Slope Borough (Dugger, 1984~. According to industry estimates, Be potential resources of Alaska onshore and offshore represent a very significant part of the total undis- covered resources left to be found in [the U.S.] (Kumar, 1992~. Excellent source rocks have been found in the Chukchi Sea, and the Kuv~um discovery (perhaps ~ billion barrels) by ARCO proves that com- mercial quantities of of} are present in Be Beaufort Sea. Because the costs

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20 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA of operating in the Arctic and of getting the oil to market are so high, Be minimum economic field size is large and depends on die field s distance from Be Prudhoe Bay TAPS terminal. In the Beaufort and Chukchi seas, Be minimum economic size could be as large as 3 billion barrels of oil. Exploration of Be Navann Basin has not yielded promising results (Kumar, 1992~. [xPIorauen and ProducUon In me Lease Areas Through 1990, Be oil industry had spent $10 billion to drill 75 holes that were not commercially viable in themselves in the Alaskan OCS (Davis and Pollock, 1992~. Between 1976 and 1990, 574 tracts had been leased and 21 wells had been drilled. The Beaufort Sea planning area has 469 active leases. In the Chukchi Sea planning area, 350 tracts have been leased and four wells have been drilled; all 350 leases are active. In the Navarin Basin planning area, 163 tracts have been leased and nine wells (including one deep skatigraphic test well) have been drilled; 22 leases are active (USGS, 1992a). As defined by MMS, a producible lease is one from which oil, gas, or both [can be produced] in quantities sufficient to yield a return in excess of the costs, after completion of the well, of producing the hydrocar- bons at the wellhead (30 C.F.R. 250.11 (1993~. Eight wells in the Beaufort Sea planning area have been classified as producible by MMS, although four have been relinquished. None of Be eight wells can be considered economically productive at the time of the committee s delibera- tions. For instance, Be outlook for activity in the Navarin Basin is not promising, but more exploratory drilling would be possible in the Chukchi Sea if partnerships between companies were formed. The search for major fields continues in the Beaufort Sea (Kumar, 1992~. M - AGFM[~T OF OCS ACTIVITIES Federal responsibility for development of mineral resources and conser- vation of OCS natural resources was established by the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) (67 State 462) of 1953, the Submerged Lands Act (67 State 29) of 1953, and Be OCSLA amendments of 1978 (43 U.S.C. 1331 et seq.) I~asing of OCS oil and gas resources is managed by MMS,

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INTRODUCTION 21 which was formed in 1982 as a result of Secretary of the Interior James Watt's desire to consolidate responsibility for offshore of! and gas develop- ment within one agency. MMS includes some functions and personnel previously assigned to the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Geological Survey. From 1954, when the oil and gas leasing program began, Trough 1991, Me last year for which statistics have been published, federal OCS of} and gas development has provided almost 7.9% (9.2 million barrels) of total domestic of} production; about 14.7% (97.3 billion cubic feet) of domestic natural gas; and more than $96 billion in revenue from cash bonuses, lease rental payments, and royalties on produced oil and gas (MMS, 1992b). In 1991 alone, OCS production accounted for ~ i.7% of domestic oil, 24.2% of domestic natural gas, and almost $2.S billion in revenue, of which $3.9 minion was from Alaska (MMS, 1992b). From 1954 Trough 1991, there were 107 OCS lease sales, offering 165,697 tracts Mat included 903,029,994 acres. Only 13,039 (7.9%) of those tracts, which included 67,137,007 acres (7.4% of Me acreage offered), were actually leased. In the Alaska region, 25,487 tracts were offered from 1954 Trough 1991; 1,566 (6.~%) of Me tracts have been leased, an area of 8,617,658 acres (6.4%~. Table I-l shows Me regional breakdown of lease offerings, leases issued, and leases under supervision from 1954 Trough 1991. The OCS lease sale schedule is established in accordance why a 5-year plan dlat sets form Me size, timing, and location of proposed leasing ac~vides. The pen is developed in a 2-year process that includes consulta- tion why coastal states and other federal agencies and an opportunity for public comment. Beginning in 1983, lease sales were offered for whole areas, instead of for selected tracts, to increase Me numbers of blocks and leases and to encourage more drilling of exploratory wells in frontier areas (areas where Mere had been no oil and gas production), such as areas of deep water. The current plan, effective from m'd-1992 to m-997, calls for IS sales in I! planning areas (MMS, 1992c). Since 1987, sales in several environmentally sensitive subareas have been deferred indefinitely (MMS, 1987a) and additional deferrals, cancelHations, and leasing moratoria have occurred. Specific to this study, in 1992, Me Navarin lease sale (107) was canceled and deferred for review until 1996 why Me sale proposal for Norton, Navarin, and St. Mat~ew-Hall in Me next 5-year program (1997- 2001) (MMS, 1992c).

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22 OCSDECISIONS: ALASKA o ._ V2 As _4 V) V) .c w o V) as Ct V: o .= 1 _4 An; U. C) - o V' C) sit V] L. V) C) U. C) U' Ct CC V = O o C) V) v o o Do oo ~ ~ ~ Go ~o Cal ~ US Cal Go o rid 0 0 Go ~ oo ~ ~ ~ ~ oo ~ ~ 0 ~ 0 C~ ~ 0 - ~d cr. ~ _ oo ~0 ~0 ~ ~0 ~U~ _ _ _ _ _ ~n ~_ oo oo ~0 ~0 a ~c~ n C ~O U~ _ ~0 ~ _ ~oo ~0 ~ oo ~oo a~ _ 0 oo _ _ _ ~ oo ~ O t_ - ~_ C~ ~ CQ cs _ _ ~ o ._ 0 ~ V) C) S~ V2 ~: . _ - ._ .= V, o co S~ C~ S~ o ._ CD - o s: ao _` _ cr\ _ .= CC t-. Ct o ('-) C3^-~ ~^-1 O _~ ~ ~S U: V ~ , ~ ~ 8 _ ~ =.5 U] .. ~ =^.5 oo Co _ . . ~ oo te V] C) ~ ~ ~ s ~Q _ ~ \~, ~. ~ ~ ~ ~,5= tE C ~ ~ E o~;;~= o~ 0D ~ ~ 5 _ <, ~ o ~ ~ ~ E s ~ ~ _^ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ a ~ ~4 ~ ~ ~ `_ ~Ct

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ASP Mandate INTRODUCTION 23 As it was amended in 1978, Section IS of OCSLA requires MMS to manage Me OCS oil and gas program with consideration for the economic, social, and environmental values of renewable and nonrenewable resources; for the manne, coastal, and human environments that could be affected; for the laws, goals, and policies of the affected states; and for the equitable sharing of developmental benefits and environmental risks among the various regions. The timing and location of leases must be selected, to the greatest extent practicable, to balance the potential for environmental damage, the potential for the discovery of oil and gas, and the potential for harm to the coastal zone (43 U.S.C. 1344~. In requiring environmental studies, OCSLA establishes two goals for ESP. The first is to develop information needed for "the assessment and management of environmental impacts on the human, marine, and coastal environments of the OCS and the coastal areas that may be affected by of! and gas development" in a proposed leasing area (43 U.S.C. 1346 Cam. To the extent practicable, studies must be "designed to predict impacts on the marine biota, which may result from chronic low-level pollution or large spills associated with OCS production, from the introduction of drill cuffings and driD muds in the area, and from the laying of pipe to serve the offshore production area, and the impacts of development offshore on the affected coastal areas" (43 U.S.C. 1346 A. The second goal is to conduct additional studies subsequent to the leasing and development of an area or region as the secretary deems necessary and to "monitor the human, ma- rine, and coastal environments of such an area or region to provide time- series and data-trend information which can be used for comparison wad previously collected data to identify important changes in Me quality and productivity of such environments, to establish trends in Me areas studied and monitored, and to design experiments to identify Me causes of changes" (43 U.S.C. 1346 (bid. The many reviews and permits required at various stages of He OCS oil and gas process are shown in Figures I-2 Trough I-5 and are discussed in Appendix A.

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24 OCSDECISlONS: ~S~ of Federal Nosier _ NT OF ~ ~ ERIOR /ndus" . ~ ~ __ . ................................. . ,. . . | ~ era Roister ~ ~ F - Oral _ ~dewy ~ . R~ister ~, I t- .................................................. ............................ ....................................................... ...................... ....... . .. . ............................................................ ............................. ......... ................... ...... ................. ...... .................. .......... ...................................................... ................................ .............................. . Input ~: ~ :: :~:~: :, .. :~: ::: :.~-~: Not e 0f ~ il! ~ $? iS A alla ill .......................................................... . ~.~ iR~`steer~a , ,.,,,.,, , ,., , .......... .......... ............. . . ~ . . . . . .. . of. v r wrings . ~ _ ~ N otice of ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ : ~. A Fal a ll} ................................ I r . . ... , . .................................. ~1~1 .~ ~ I:::::::::::: :: ::::: : Notice of ~. ~ . . .......................................................... in F aol , ~............................ Governors_ AN ;~4A. '':':-:':':':':.:.:.:.:: :. .:: :.: :.: '''' ' '': ~ ~-~e ...... . , _ . ':-:-:':':':':.'.:.'.'.' '.-.-.'.'.- - -.- ' ' ' '.'.' ':' '"':""".'''.''- - ''''''''''-'''' ... 2 ' '.- 2 '.-.-.'.'.'.'.'.' '.-. '::: :.:.:.: :.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:'''''''' ''': ':':-:':':-:':.:.:.'.'.'.'.'.'.'.'.' ' ' ' ' ' - - ' ' ' ' ' ':': -: " " " " .'.' ' - - ' ' ' ' - - ' ' ' ' ' ' ' - ' -: F~eral ........................................................... PI daddy . Roister ......... .......... ...... ~ to sub :.: :.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.: :.: ::: .::::::: :. : :.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:. . ::::..:: :: :.:::::::::: . , ,~,,.,,. . ........................................ . :: :.:. .:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.: .::: :.:.::: :. : : :: ::::::::.::: ....................................................... ::::::: :::::::::: ::: : :.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.: :. .:.:.:.:.:. .: ::::. .:: .:::: :.. :..:.:.:.:.::....:.:::...::::::. .'.,.',.2..'..2...'''''..."'"''" ::::::::-:: ::::: :::::::: :: :: :: :: ::::: :::: ::::. ..:..:..:..::.::::....:.::..: ::::.::::::.:::::::::::::::::: : : :: . ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::: ::::::::: :: : ::::: :: ::~:~:~:~:~:: :::::::: : ::: :: :~ : :::::::::::: .: ::::::: .: :::~:::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::: : ::~: :: : ~ ::::::: : : :: :~ : ::::::::::::::: : :.:~::::::.:::::.:::::::~:~::~:~::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::: :::: : . L~ ::::::, ::: ~ ::~:: :::::::::: : :::: :::: :::::::::-:::::::::::::::::::: :-::::-:-:::-:::::::-::::::-::::-:-:: :~:: :~: :~:::::~: ::: :~:- ~ -::::::: :::: :-:-:: ::.::: :~ .:: ::::: ::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :-: :-::: ~ - ::::: ::::: :::::-:::: ::: :-:: ::::: ::::::: :-:::: :t~mis~ ' ................................. .. ......................... ,................................ ... ........ . :::: :-:-::: :.:.:.: .:::: ::-: :-::::::-::::::-::-::-:-::::::: :: :::::::::::::::::::::::::: DEPARTIUENT OF THE INTERIOR _-~ if. ~ _ Year OCS On and Gas Leasing Schedule Geology and Resource Reports Define Area of Hydrocarbon l Potential . . ._ . . I Request for Interest l | (Frontier Sale Areas) l ;;;;;;; .; ... ..................................... Call for Intormatlon & Nomin~one/ Notice of Intent to Prepare EIS .. ; ;.;.;.;.;.; .;.; ; ;.; ; ; ; ; ; Call Closes l _ -Evaluate Comments l -Evaluate Multiple Uses | in EIS Proceas , .. ................. ........ t' i 3 Ares Identlflc~on . | Scoping Process . x x . ~.I~ xt i. 5~.~ ~ .? i; | D - ft Ells ~ . ~] ~,2t,2 -,-.2,.'~ ',:.~..2.~ ............................. Flnal ElS ~ ~ . ~ (Regional Office) ~ ~ ~ .... . ... L Secretarial lasue Document ~ P - sed Notice of Salem| . . .............................. ' Lyon Em_ Notice otSab I. i-. ~ Flaal Notice of Sale 3 ~; , if Sale ~ 1A" _ I . e,l,l,l.l,l,l,I,,.,.~ ~Post Sale Bid Reviews l ~(Regional Office) Sale Results ! 1 i= tonal Offices = = Am== /-;, !k .~ ~I/';";<'i;':;' ~ ~4 . | Lease Issuance IL !~ . ._ ADDrOVe . . I Tesa~tive I I Decision I , Approve Decision i Meeting on I Areas, I Terms, and I Conditions I Approve FIGURE 1-2 The pre-lease phase of the OCS oil and gas leasing process. Source: MMS, 1991a.

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INTRODUCTION 25 NoN-DEpARTMENToF THEINTERIOR I 1 ~ | i - . 5| Federal . , ,., . ~[ ~ .: :::::,. otPlan& ~ Review . omme t ............................................. .. _. ~ : ........................................................ ...................................................... ....................... if Color on I .......................................... APD l "M .................. ...................... ............................. "n 4 tenc - . . ................... '.,, : ......... .............. ... , ............ ............. : Nip Warmly .. 2'."'~2'' ~. .,.~ ,.,. ....................................................................................................... .2 ' 4""-'"'""-' .................. - .................................... .......... . . .......................................... Review .................................................................. Pi At Plan & _ , . . ............... Commend ~ ~ . Environr Emil A y4 4 :::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::' :.:.:.::::.::':: : :::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::::::::: : . ....................................................... An tenc ................................................. . ~ ............................ ,,:.:,:.:,:. ,.:, ,:.:,, .:::.:,:. ,: :.:.:,:,:,:,:.: ~ ~ ::: :::: .................................................. . ~,. l _ ev.&Pro . ..................................................... _ APD . ................. ~ _ .. 2 2'.'.2 - 2. ~."' 4 ~-".2. ::::-:::::::::4:::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::: .'2""''~,.,-., ......................................................... ::::::::::::':.::::::::::::: :::::::::::::.::::::::::::::: 1""'"''"""""' ............................................... ~.'.'."-"".'.'.'.'-.''2.' 2.-.-' "'.''.'.'.'-2', 'ii iinePermi i . : Reviews Applic tion ........ - ~"M . ~ ....................................... Consistency .. =~ ............... ~:~?, ~: ~ .,., .~ ~ ~.~. ~') ~ :~:'~'~, ~ ., . .................................................. ''''2=.''' = '' i i ior~ly | ^ ... 1 0 uc on I ............ ~ jReiin ui men .......................................... ~ ~3 ................. ~ An environmental analysis (i.e., ER. EA. or El S) apF ropriate to the sc ~e ot the pro soa ion is performed. 2PI~orm verification reviews are done only in certain circumstances (s e 30 CFR 250 Subpart 1). 3Shutdown requires well a andonment, platform removal, and clearance of the seatbor wr hin 1 year. , ., ,. :: :,:,., ,. :............ . . ..: _ . . ~ ,... . . . . . . . .......... P. - fC ............. .. ......... _ ,....,._. . _ . MMS :::::::::: ............... ~........ ~.. ,..... .i.i.,., ........ Environmen al Analy is' , I ................................ ................................ ~g. Exploration Drilling Permit . Approval . }~}~ L~ . i Pl~orm Vermcation Revkw2 '. .... ...................... ....i ..: .. :. :: :: . . ,.......................................................... ,............................. :.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.: :.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:. ......... ~ ....'.' , ~ 1 ~:~ ~ Environmental Analysis, ~T T~.T ..,~ Plattorm Veritication Revkw2 Devdopment & Prociuction Drilling Permit Apiproval Environmental Analysis' ~ ~ (Includes OR iease rignt-ot~wayl. _ l: :: : ::::: ::::: ~:: L:. Plpeiine Permit Approval | ~:~:: -:.= ~:~ ~. ,. c :: i:~51: ~: 2.' : Of icbl Records Tl" ~lona . . i~eral Register ~ederal Regi~kr Cancellation C~c~ ~5f-S-isli~ Injor~r~io~ 7/91 FIGURE 1-3 The post-lease phase of the OCS oil and gas leasing process. Source: MMS, 1991a.

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26 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA EXPLANATION Federal Non-Federal Federal Decision Industry ,.,, at; ..... , ., .,,, ,.,,, ,.,, ,., , , , , ,.,., . I :::::: :: _ ::::::::-:::::::::::::: :2::.:-::::::::: ................... an hem ~ . ... . .... .. (:;i~rnOrs and ::::___:_::: :::::':::-::: : .::::':.::::::_:: 1 ..~ ~.~.g-e es.~..~. I ......... .. ................. ~ ....... a *.ecteu ~.s .... .. . :::':::':'::':';.i'~'1 '~^'' All' :::::::::: , :, - it, r .':. ~visa. ::::::::::::::::.:::::::::::::::::::::::~::::: 2: ::::::: .g.o~r.amme~.. t ~ ... .................................. ............ . 4 _ .~.... ,, . ~U.~:~:::~Up ~ ....... ............................................................................................. . . ... .. .... . . . ............ . T Governor submits I l written comments | l 30 | State CZM Agencies notify I MMS of concurrence or | objection with CZM | consistency certification at | earliest practicable time. | (Must notify MMS within 3 | months of basis for further | delay, or concurrence is | presumed.) State CZM | agency may take up to 6 ! months total. - Exploration Plan submitted 1 10 working days 1 ~: Explosion Plan ~-. _. ~ ~ - . 2 working days~ t:::::::::::::::::::::: : :::::::::::::::::: :::::::- ::::::::::: :::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::1 ~ - Explosion PI ~ ~ .......... . ~ . - ................... ~ E Semen sunm'~ ~ t:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: .: .. ::: . : :. .... ~...: :::: :-:::::::: :-:: ~ '::::::::::::::::::::::'':':': ' ::::::'::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::':':'::':':1 E:::::: :: :: ::::: :: ::: :::: : :: : ~ : I: ::::: ::: :. : ::: ::: :.:.: . .:.:.:. .:.:.::::: :.: 1 . . . . YES Application for Permit ~ to Drill (APD) submitted ) / ....:::.... i. ~ I. .~.... ~ P, ...... . . ... .... . .. . ,.lar' retX.imec'~to ~ , i .. .... ~esse~operator .-. . .................... .....~....m. oaf. Strong ......................................... . :::: A_ HA_ " '"''"'"- ' '~81':':~~: :::::::::: ::: , ...... ... . . . .. ., .... suppleme~'tal~:~ :~ ... . .. .. . .. . . ............ 2',.~0Et0~8Eti~n, . ~ ~ ,: ~ .................................. ..................................... .. .................................. ............... .. . . . .......................... . .. NO | If disapproved, plan may be resubmitted if conditions change. (Leases may be canceled in accordance with 43U.S.C. 1334.) .. ............ :, ..-.~,, ,_ . ~ _ ~:::::::::::::::::",x - ']::::::::::::::::::::::::: 1 _ i::::::':::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: 1 \ t' 2 retOrned ~ I. , _ i - -: :- : ::::- :: : :::: :-:- ::: _ '.x.~..l*:x~x-~r. a::::: :::::::::::::::~:~_:~:: a_: :~:'':' :.J: ::::::::::::::::::: ~ 1:::_~q~:~_~:~q:: a::::::::::: ::::::A ~. X:T^^X'X~X~X'tt-::::::::::::::::::I _ i:: .::::::::-:::: : ::::: a.::.::::.:::::.: :: - : :-:::: Ax - ~ F: :W~X:XX XEROX.-XtX A:::::::::::: ~! ::^ ' ': :: ' : :: B:~: ': 6: ,: :::: :::::::::::::::::::::: - - .: . :-.::::_::.:::::::::::::::::::::. ..~ I: :~::l$~ - F'l - 0~. B: :-: ::: ::::: :::::::::~t~-~:::::::::.::::: ::::::::- /V, ~ _' :: :: :::: .:: . .:. :.: ...: :. :: t : - :::: :::::::: a - ~owl~i ~ ' - I -- ~ c: :::: :::::-:: - ~ : ::::::::::: :::: :: :::e I:::::::::-:::: :::^r:-r~r::::: ::::::::::: .:.:.:.: :.: ::: :::.::::::::::: :::: : ::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::: ::: ::::: 1':':::::::::::::::-~:-:~::: :: ':::: ::::::::::::: ::: ::: :::::::::::::: :::::: :: ::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::' t:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::: :::::::: :. :::.:::::::::::::::::::: :::::::: t ::: :'' ::': :: ' : :: ':': :: ':':'::::':::': ::':':'':' ':':-:: 1 1:::::: '''' ' ' aft:-: ' it'''.:: :' ------------------~------------------ I s,u,~plem.e.nla'. i. ... ' ,lrltormation-~ ~ ~ ~ I'd:. ::::::::::::-::::::::::::::::::: ::: :: ::: . :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: -:::: ::: ::: :: YES CZM consistency concurrence Y)S \ 1 - NO NO YiS Test well drilled - - | Lessee may.~equest | mediation orreview | by the Secretary of | Commerce. l I (See 15 CFR 930.) 1 FIGURE 14 Exploration phase of post-lease activities. Source: MMS, 1991a.

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EXPLANATION L~ Industry Nlon-Federal Federal Decision . . - . : ~: :.:.:.: : : Send Plan to ~ :Govern4~s and .. . .... .... , - CZM agencles.of -I ~ . . . . . . : ~.~affee.md.Stat=: ... .. . ........................ ~ and to to - ! ~ ........................ ~tes ~ ~ . . .... ......... .............. . ~ . ~ ~ wowings . days T Governor submits written _ 60 comments days Draft EIS sent to Governor . State CZMAgencies notify MMS of concurrence or objection with CZM consistency certification at earliest practicable time. (Must notify MMS within 3 months of basis for further delay, or concurrence is presumed.) State CZM Agency may take up to 6 months total. ~- ' Development & Production ' Plan submitted to MMS \ 1 , ..... ... Stony ~ . , .- .. ... . YES I . ~''m"~"nt~.'.P ~I .'..''''''"''2'.'""P'''' "' - '"Up ch:nical & men coeval _ _~ NO, 60 days CZM _ . consistency concurrence _ NO Nit .... - In it/ YES YES ~:AP:D r.eturned to A lication f P m t ,^~ ~. pp or er I ..~.~. ~. t ~. ~I to Drill (APD) submitted - tor m~ifica:tlon..... ~ . . . .. .. . _ , ~ ~ ~ ~ - ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ for for ., ~ . ... .... : ...... : :: :: : ::: i:: Hi:::::::::::: - ~:~:~:::~:~:~:::~:~ - :~:~:~::~:~: ~:~:~.:~::~:. . - ~ - : Sup e,m,,en~,,~t ~ I:. - :: ~:~ ~ ~infor~don . ~ NO-' : APIA 8~ - d: : .- ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ,.~ ~ . ~ :~. .~- ., i 2 . . ' 2 .2 : ' '''' . -. YES , ~ Development wells drilled/Production INTRODUCTION 27 NO _, 1 I ''P'la3~3 i~..,.l 1 , ......... _ . . ~ .~.S0Up0tOF.l I I:.':.:.: :''.:::: :.:2 2.: ::..:::.::: :2:': ::: A: ::: ::::::::: :: ::: :: :::.:.:. 1 1 I.. I,.or,modif'~in l I , : ,,, $~ - '"".."..2'.'2".'.'."1 1 . ,, v':.: :~.v':.::, :., : l 1 ~ su~iement } 11 I:::::: :.:: .: :.: . :.. .: :2:.:.::::: :': ::: ': :::::2::: ::::::::.:::.:2:.:.1 1 ~I~,,,,.o,:~lo,n I I ~ :.. .: .. .... 1 1 NO NO | . ~ ...,..:...."a'n'd..~:' ''..~u'0i.lc".'' 'I :::::::::::::::::-::::-::'--''''.:-::::::::::::::-:::::''1 ...................... ...................... . ... .... . I (comments 1 30i~iion ........ ~.'.''"'~,d2',.a,"s,''' | 2 ' 'ad ' ' ' ' """"1 YES, _I 2 years 69 days ~, 1:::::::::::::::-:::':'-'.''~..1 | Lessee may request | I mediation orreview | | by the Secretary of | | Commerce. l I (See 15 CFR 930.) If disapproved, plan | may be resubmitted if | conditions change. | (Leases may be l canceled in accordance with 43 U.S.C. 1334.) FIGURE 1-5 Development and production phase of post-lease activities. Source: MMS, 1991a.

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28 OCS DECISIONS: ALASKA Environmental Information any OCS Oil and Gas Leasing The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and judicial decisions in lawsuits over OCS leasing require Rat MMS must factually state what is known and not known about Me environment for Be decision maker in an EIS and address Dose subjects that have a bearing on the decision or its alternatives. Imperfect knowledge on a subject cannot stop a lease sale, but the decision maker must be aware of Me inadequacy of that knowledge. This report is an attempt to focus on Me merit of Me existing scientific data base as developed in part by MMS's Environmental Studies Program and its adequacy for making leasing decisions. It is not a review of MMS's EISsor Weir adequacy. A brief description of the decision-making process Mat the federal government uses to determine He timing, location, and buyers for an OCS lease is contained in Appendix A. Here we review the stages at which environmental information is used in Hat process. The pre-lease phase of He OCS oil and gas leasing process is shown in Figure I-2. The public has five opportunities to provide input. First, Hey can comment on the draft 5-Year OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Schedule. Second, Hey can provide comments to MMS after a Call for Information & Nominations is announced in He Federal Register. Third, after an area has been identified and the secrecy approves it as a potential lease sale, the public can have input into the scoping process before a draft EIS. After a draft EIS is announced in the Federal Register, He public can participate in hearings or provide input during a 60-day comment period. Their final opportunity for input during the pre-lease phase occurs after a final EIS and Secretarial Issue Document are approved by the secretary of the DOI. A Proposed Notice of Sale is announced in the Fedleral Register along with an invitation to comment. Through the pre-lease phase, input is required from the state, industry, and other federal agencies. The post-lease phase of the OCS oil and gas leasing process is shown in Figures 1-3 through I-5. In this phase, public input is not required, although input is required from the state, industry, and other federal agencies. Appendix A discusses this in further detail. After a lease has been issued and an exploration plan has been submitted, MM:S conducts an Environmental Assessment (EA) as required by NEPA. If MMS finds that no significant impact on the environment w'11 result, development and production can ensue.

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INTRODUCTION 29 An EIS may be required if He Development and Production Plan (DPP) submitted by a corporation lists seismic risks, areas of high ecological sensitivity, evidence of hazardous bottom conditions, or Be use of new or unusual technology. Particular consideration is given to addressing significant adverse effects on the marine, coastal, or human environment Mat can result from Me construction of new onshore and offshore facilities. Cumulative impacts are also considered. If the DPP is accepted, an Application for Permit to Drill is submitted. This application contains extensive information Mat allows MMS to evaluate He operational safety and pollution prevention measures of a proposed operation. If He application is approved, He lessee is given an Exploration Drilling Permit. The EA, including off-lease right-of-way, is required when He lessee submits a Pipeline Permit Application.

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