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Thread: Here we go again...

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    Default Here we go again...

    Appears everyone agrees on this - except the BLM. http://www.adn.com/article/20150123/...less-blm-folds

    Like most federal agencies - very few in the BLM have ever even worked in oil and gas business - most are lifer BLM employees.
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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    I agree with the village and keeping the buffer.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    I agree with the village and keeping the buffer.
    Me too. While no road at all would be my first preference, gotta give credit to those who put even a little value on habitat protection.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Appears everyone agrees on this - except the BLM. http://www.adn.com/article/20150123/...less-blm-folds

    Like most federal agencies - very few in the BLM have ever even worked in oil and gas business - most are lifer BLM employees.
    Yeah, and fewer at Conoco-Phillips have ever been responsible for managing a public resource to achieve maximum public good.


    “The BLM record of decision must agree with the record of decision from the Army Corps of Engineers and the BLM mitigation measures must be acceptable in order for the project to move forward for consideration by our senior management,” Burnett said.

    I love the perspective of the oil barons - the public land regulator, in essence the agency charged with acting on behalf of ALL citizens of the US, must agree to do things their way or else. Because? I guess if they don't Conoco will absolutely refuse to move forward to obtain 30,000 barrels of oil/day for years? Yep, that makes sense. The additional cost of what BLM requires is decimal dust in terms of the profits that will be taken out of that field.

    But, hell, Alaskans are desperate, and the chair of the Senate Energy Committee will jump when they say frog so why not do a little strong-arming. It's what they do best! And, why should they care what the locals who live off the land want, unless their opinions have been bought, cheaply usually.

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    So we should add more roadway covering up more tundra with gravel because we are with in 2.5 miles of the creek instead of 3 miles?
    I'm not sure if this is more habitat protection or destruction?
    Think about how much tundra is damaged by the extra road surface they need to build.
    They have a roadless pad at Alpine. While they have made it work they have decided it just doesn't work out very well and a pad that has road access is better all the way around.
    Also did you notice it says the tribal government is against the road.
    But later it says the Native village corporation in Nuiqsut,Kuukpik corporation supports Conocos route.
    So which is it?
    Besides the royalities the nuiqsut natives receive from Alpine they also receive free natural gas for life.
    My guess is they are holding out for Conoco to offer them something in return such as more freebies or a pay out of some sort.
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    Default for the public good or ??

    With a much higher pay scale, Conoco-Phillips & BP hire qualified ex-govt. employees frequently. The BLM pay is too low to attract really good people from the oil companies.

    But the real issue is "public good" - is development for the general good of the country or for the good of a few that claim to live off a few fish miles away from the development?



    Quote Originally Posted by Chessie View Post
    Yeah, and fewer at Conoco-Phillips have ever been responsible for managing a public resource to achieve maximum public good.


    “The BLM record of decision must agree with the record of decision from the Army Corps of Engineers and the BLM mitigation measures must be acceptable in order for the project to move forward for consideration by our senior management,” Burnett said.

    I love the perspective of the oil barons - the public land regulator, in essence the agency charged with acting on behalf of ALL citizens of the US, must agree to do things their way or else. Because? I guess if they don't Conoco will absolutely refuse to move forward to obtain 30,000 barrels of oil/day for years? Yep, that makes sense. The additional cost of what BLM requires is decimal dust in terms of the profits that will be taken out of that field.

    But, hell, Alaskans are desperate, and the chair of the Senate Energy Committee will jump when they say frog so why not do a little strong-arming. It's what they do best! And, why should they care what the locals who live off the land want, unless their opinions have been bought, cheaply usually.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    Default Public good?????

    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    With a much higher pay scale, Conoco-Phillips & BP hire qualified ex-govt. employees frequently. The BLM pay is too low to attract really good people from the oil companies.

    But the real issue is "public good" - is development for the general good of the country or for the good of a few that claim to live off a few fish miles away from the development?
    No, the BLM pay scale is not too low to attract "really good people from the oil companies." The BLM (and other public service organizations) attract "really goood people" with values that are different from oil company employees. Money is not everything. Development to generate the greatest short term profit is not their goal. Amazing as it apparently is to you maximum money as fast as possible is not what drives everyone.

    Development may be good for the general population of the country. But how and under what conditions that development occurs should be defined under the laws and regulations established to protect the public interests, NOT by the self interests of private, for profit companies whose sole purpose for existence is to generate the maximum profit for a small number of private owners/shareholders. In this case the organization charged by law with protecting the public interest is the BLM, not the Army Corps of Engineers, and certainly not Conoco-Phillips/BP.

    How the "public good" is defined is also critical. Laws and regulations established through a public process should govern. The "public good" should take the long term perspective not the short term. The resources (in this case land, game, oil, etc.) belong to all citizens of the US, not just to Alaskans and not just the locals.

    The interests of the locals should be given special consideration (particularly in a situation such as this where the locals history of occupancy and subsistence from the land and resources pre-dates the existence of the government, the corporations, and the rest of the populace by thousands of years and their subsistence continues to depend on these resources.) But obviously the local interests don't control or we'd just have a local vote and call it good.

    My guess is you'd want special consideration of your interests before the government allowed a drilling rig set up on your property or on government land right next door or in a spot you hunted to get essentially all the meat needed to meet your family's needs.

    Rember the reaction of folks in the Mat-Su Valley when their state senator, Scott Ogan, sold them down the river to an outside private company - Evergreen? Remember that the State owns mineral rights under all private land in Alaska? Remember when good old Scott got a special bill passed to allow Evergreen to drill for gas pretty much anywhere it wanted, anytime it wanted, in complete disregard of the interests/desires of the owners of surface rights? Yeah, Scott resigned in the face of a recall election. But you can take comfort in the fact that he got a nicely paying job working on land and mineral issues in DNR as a political payoff, which as a cabinet maker he was imminently qualified to do!

    So, how do you​ define "public good"? How do you want it defined if a private company proposes development is in your back yard or favorite hunting area?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chessie View Post
    .......maximum money as fast as possible is not what drives everyone.
    .................................................. ...
    .......................
    So, how do you​ define "public good"? How do you want it defined if a private company proposes development is in your back yard or favorite hunting area?
    Excellent! How few discern real values.
    Rep sent.

    (Remarkable semblance in this thread to one that was just shut down, too. IMO)
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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    For the greater good of man we need at least half to disappear over night,natures choice as to value to earth.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Default special interests and common good

    I don't what your resume shows, but in my career I've worked for two govt. agencies and 4 major oil companies. I've done consulting work for a number of other oil and gas companies and worked with a number of various govt. agencies. I can assure you that govt. employees just as interested in their pay checks as those in the private sector. Given a choice, most really capable people with go with the jobs that pay much much better. Very few are willing to leave an oil company and take a big cut in pay to work for a govt. agency. Pay isn't everything but it way up there for those with a family that have bill to pay. Been there - done that - how about you my friend?

    Most of us older folks have seen our favorite fishing and hunting spots developed and/or much more crowded. It has happened everywhere - even in Alaska. Why should this case be an exception - do some think they are special or something?

    Your statement of a "small number of shareholders" also shows your ignorance of the real world. Hundreds of thousands - if not millions - own shares in Conoco-Phillips in retirement funds etc. Hardly a "small number' in my definition. All profit when the stock goes up and dividend's increase. Likewise, hundreds of millions are reaping the benefits through lower gasoline and fuel prices with increased oil production - not just a few rich guys but real people like you and me. And everyone in Alaska will profit with increased oil product - and the no and lower income groups will profit the most - not the rich guys. Is that for the "public good" to you?

    My definition of the public good is for the 300+ million Americans and 700,000+ Alaskans is the "public good" to me - not just a few hundred in a spot most Americans will never even see in their lifetimes - or their kids or grand kids lifetimes.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chessie View Post
    No, the BLM pay scale is not too low to attract "really good people from the oil companies." The BLM (and other public service organizations) attract "really goood people" with values that are different from oil company employees. Money is not everything. Development to generate the greatest short term profit is not their goal. Amazing as it apparently is to you maximum money as fast as possible is not what drives everyone.

    Development may be good for the general population of the country. But how and under what conditions that development occurs should be defined under the laws and regulations established to protect the public interests, NOT by the self interests of private, for profit companies whose sole purpose for existence is to generate the maximum profit for a small number of private owners/shareholders. In this case the organization charged by law with protecting the public interest is the BLM, not the Army Corps of Engineers, and certainly not Conoco-Phillips/BP.

    How the "public good" is defined is also critical. Laws and regulations established through a public process should govern. The "public good" should take the long term perspective not the short term. The resources (in this case land, game, oil, etc.) belong to all citizens of the US, not just to Alaskans and not just the locals.

    The interests of the locals should be given special consideration (particularly in a situation such as this where the locals history of occupancy and subsistence from the land and resources pre-dates the existence of the government, the corporations, and the rest of the populace by thousands of years and their subsistence continues to depend on these resources.) But obviously the local interests don't control or we'd just have a local vote and call it good.

    My guess is you'd want special consideration of your interests before the government allowed a drilling rig set up on your property or on government land right next door or in a spot you hunted to get essentially all the meat needed to meet your family's needs.

    Rember the reaction of folks in the Mat-Su Valley when their state senator, Scott Ogan, sold them down the river to an outside private company - Evergreen? Remember that the State owns mineral rights under all private land in Alaska? Remember when good old Scott got a special bill passed to allow Evergreen to drill for gas pretty much anywhere it wanted, anytime it wanted, in complete disregard of the interests/desires of the owners of surface rights? Yeah, Scott resigned in the face of a recall election. But you can take comfort in the fact that he got a nicely paying job working on land and mineral issues in DNR as a political payoff, which as a cabinet maker he was imminently qualified to do!

    So, how do you​ define "public good"? How do you want it defined if a private company proposes development is in your back yard or favorite hunting area?
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    With the oil boom in the Dakotas wasn't Americas production at an all time high? Yet we still had high gas prices. This recent drop in gas prices is the doings of the Saudis. So if our production is the highest it's been in recent years but it had no effect on gas prices how can you say the American people benefit at all? Unless you're a shareholder of course.

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    Default supply and demand

    The concept is called "supply and demand". The oil and gas boom in the lower did increase the supply and help result in lower prices. But the market doesn't respond immediately - we are seeing the results of increased supply.

    And there are other factors also - like demand decreasing in China. But increased supply always results in a lower prices than if the supply had decreased or stayed the same.


    Quote Originally Posted by BMhunts View Post
    With the oil boom in the Dakotas wasn't Americas production at an all time high? Yet we still had high gas prices. This recent drop in gas prices is the doings of the Saudis. So if our production is the highest it's been in recent years but it had no effect on gas prices how can you say the American people benefit at all? Unless you're a shareholder of course.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    I don't what your resume shows, but in my career I've worked for two govt. agencies and 4 major oil companies. I've done consulting work for a number of other oil and gas companies and worked with a number of various govt. agencies. I can assure you that govt. employees just as interested in their pay checks as those in the private sector. Given a choice, most really capable people with go with the jobs that pay much much better. Very few are willing to leave an oil company and take a big cut in pay to work for a govt. agency. Pay isn't everything but it way up there for those with a family that have bill to pay. Been there - done that - how about you my friend?
    I'm sure your resume is impressive. I'm confident that mine is as varied and impressive as yours and I'm satisified with my successes, including my monetary success.

    But neither our resumes nor monetary successes matter. Ideas and facts matter in discussions not resumes or money.

    You seem to have missed my point entirely or just decided to put forward a straw man argument. I can assure you I'm aware that everyone wants to make an adequate living and support their families and live comfortable lives. Makes no difference whether they are working in the private sector or public service.

    But, you have apparently done little work in management or spent little time learning what motivates people - on the job and elsewhere. Had you done so you would know that money is the primary motivator for most people only up to a point - the point at which they are sufficiently secure and have "enough" (which is a bit different for everyone.) Beyond that what motivates people is achieving mastery within their profession and other aspects of their life, having autonomy over how they do their job and live their lives, and contributing to the larger society - i.e. making a difference so their life matters, on the job and off.

    My point was that people in different professions, and particularly those who choose public service as opposed to working in the private sector, tend to do so because they have different values. People who tend to desire money/toys/possessions/status above other things tend to work in the private sector where monetary reward and all it will buy is the preeminent motivator. People who work in public service tend to be motivated by other things. Anyone working in public service for any length of time does so because they value what they do beyond money because they know they will never make what they could in the private sector. Or, they go work in the private sector because that's where the money is. Values guide choices - even among "really capable people."

    You appear to be making the classic mistake of projecting your own values and motivations onto everyone else. Status and monetary success (and impressive resumes) seem to be important to you. They aren't to everyone. Apparently you can't understand this and conclude that only the "really capable people" share your values and motivations and the rest of society is comprised of losers. Sorry to burst your egotistical bubble but you are wrong. "Really capable people" work in both the public and private sectors. They just do so because they value different things.

    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Most of us older folks have seen our favorite fishing and hunting spots developed and/or much more crowded. It has happened everywhere - even in Alaska. Why should this case be an exception - do some think they are special or something?
    So, your theory is that because most places have been screwed up all places must be screwed up? That seems well thought out.

    Actually, no. My point was that the government agency responsible for protecting the long term public interests is the appropriate organization to determine how development on public land should occur, if it occurs. And, that this decision should not be made by a private for profit company whose sole responsibility is to return the greatest profit to it's owners/shareholders as fast as possible. Such organizations will inevitably cut every possible corner and let the public owners of the land pick up the costs.

    Ever hear of Superfund Sites? Know why there is a Superfund? It's called socializing the costs of private resource exploitation and development. The private companies and shareholders reaped the profit and the public is left with the cost of the cleanup. Unfortunately, generally no real "cleanup" is possible, at any cost.

    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Your statement of a "small number of shareholders" also shows your ignorance of the real world. Hundreds of thousands - if not millions - own shares in Conoco-Phillips in retirement funds etc. Hardly a "small number' in my definition. All profit when the stock goes up and dividend's increase.
    Oh, I'm pretty familiar with the "real world." According to ConocoPhillips 2013 Annual Report there are 1,225,939 shares of common stock outstanding. Since I own more than a few of those and I know others who do also I know that there are far fewer shareholders than that. That compares to more than 307 million US citizens as of 2010. Even if all shareholders were US citizens and all held only 1 share apiece (not true as I own far more than that as do others) ConocoPhillips shareholders comprise less than one half of one percent of US citizens. So, from my perspective they comprise a "small number" compared to the larger interests of US citizens.

    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Likewise, hundreds of millions are reaping the benefits through lower gasoline and fuel prices with increased oil production - not just a few rich guys but real people like you and me. And everyone in Alaska will profit with increased oil product - and the no and lower income groups will profit the most - not the rich guys. Is that for the "public good" to you?
    Hey, I'm happy the Saudis are keeping production up which drives oil prices down for people worldwide. But whether ConocoPhillips/BP does or does not have to meet the requirements of the BLM for this one field will have no impact on world oil prices. Truthfully it will have virtually no impact on ConocoPhillips bottom line. The company had more than a $9 billion profit in 2013 on total revenues of $52 billion. Spending a few million or few hundred million to protect the Alaskan environment will have virtually no impact on ConocoPhillips bottom line.

    They spend more than that every year frivolously. For instance a friend of mine, who is a ConocoPhillips engineer, decided to transfer to Norway. They paid his moving costs, (including moving his dogs), a housing stipend, the mortgage on his vacant Alaska home, travel costs to and from Norway to Alaska regularly for non-business purposes, etc., etc. And, he's not alone.

    I'm glad for him. But as a shareholder it costs me profit. As a consumer it drives up the cost of my diesel, gasoline, etc. I'd much rather pay a modest cost to protect part of Alaska for myself, my posterity, the people who live off the land, and the rest of the citizens of the US than pay for the perks of all the "really capable people" you seem to think deserve them.


    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    My definition of the public good is for the 300+ million Americans and 700,000+ Alaskans is the "public good" to me - not just a few hundred in a spot most Americans will never even see in their lifetimes - or their kids or grand kids lifetimes.
    Well, I'm all for the greater good for the greater number. But we may differ on what "good" is. For you there is apparently no benefit to spending a few (relatively) bucks to protect a place that "most Americans will never see in their lifetimes." With that perspective there's not much point in national forests, national parks, etc. We should only protect the things we've already trashed - New York, LA, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Boston, Miami, Houston, Dallas, Seattle, etc. Most Americans will certainly see them so I guess they are the only places worth protecting. But we darn sure better protect Puerto Vallarta and Cancun because more Americans will see them than Gates of the Arctic, Denali, Glacier Bay, Wrangell-Saint Elias, Wood-Tikchik, Bristol Bay...

    As a proud member of the "really capable people" with an impressive resume who apparently places money and cheap energy for your personal aggrandizement during your short time on earth above most other things I'm sure you are proud and happy. But I pity you.

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    Member Mkay's Avatar
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    According to the article the road to the site would still be 2.5 miles from the waterway. Is that not enough? Someone know something about the geography of the area?
    My child was inmate of the month at Mat-Su pre-trial Correctional facility.

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mkay View Post
    According to the article the road to the site would still be 2.5 miles from the waterway. Is that not enough? Someone know something about the geography of the area?
    That was my thinking also. We are not talking 300 yards versus 500 yards. We are talking miles away from this creek.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mkay View Post
    According to the article the road to the site would still be 2.5 miles from the waterway. Is that not enough? Someone know something about the geography of the area?
    So, do you think random thoughts from someone on the internet who might have been in the area once or twice would be equivalent in value to the work of the BLM professionals with detailed information and knowledge of the terrain, wildlife, etc. who have responsibility for protecting the public interest? We can all have opinions but informed opinions are the only ones that are useful in actually dealing with and solving problems. Random speculation and opinion are hardly a substitute for the scientific method. Or do you not believe in the validity of science?

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Move just a half mile more over like the law states,3 miles.It will keep the road gunk out of the water shed.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chessie View Post
    So, do you think random thoughts from someone on the internet who might have been in the area once or twice would be equivalent in value to the work of the BLM professionals with detailed information and knowledge of the terrain, wildlife, etc. who have responsibility for protecting the public interest? We can all have opinions but informed opinions are the only ones that are useful in actually dealing with and solving problems. Random speculation and opinion are hardly a substitute for the scientific method. Or do you not believe in the validity of science?
    What about the science the US Army corps of engineers is using? They support this based on their information.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Move just a half mile more over like the law states,3 miles.It will keep the road gunk out of the water shed.
    According to the article there would be an additional 1 mile of road.
    How much gravel on the tundra does plan B's extra 15' wide road 1 mile long equal?
    It could possibly be more damaging to the enviroment than plan A which encroaches within 2.5 miles of the creek.
    That could be the reason or one of the reasons the US army corps of engineers approves plan A.
    Just some food for thought.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    More food is if the road hurts the tundra don't build any. The ACOE has yet built anything that (really) protected refineries on the gulf coast down south.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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