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Entries in Trans Alaska Pipeline (1)

Sunday
Jan092011

Pipeline Leak Cuts North Slope Production

Photo Courtesy - JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) -- The company that operates the Trans Alaska Pipeline has reduced flow by 95 percent after a leak was discovered on Saturday.

In a statement, Alyeska Pipeline Service said the leak was discovered when oil was found in a booster pump room at its Pump Station 1.  The Operations Control Center in Anchorage automatically cut flow at that point.  The company says no one was hurt.  Federal, state and company officials are on the site working to contain and assess any damage.

The Wall Street Journal says the reduction in flow is a big blow to BP, the largest oil producer that uses the pipeline.  The north slope produces about 630,000 barrels of oil per day or 9 percent of total U.S. production.  The Journal says BP accounts for about two-thirds of that.

Industry experts tell the Journal the shutdown should have no real impact on crude supplies because of surplus stored at the Port of Valdez.

Alyeska is owned by BP, Conoco, Exxon Mobil, Unocal and Koch Industries.

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