Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
2. The permit applicant, ExxonMobil, is proposing to develop the Thomson Sand Reservoir located approximately 60 miles east of Deadhorse on the Beaufort Sea coast, in the State of Alaska. A minimum of five wells would be drilled from three pads: a Central Pad, and East and West Pads located to access the eastern and western extent of the reservoir. The applicant would produce gas from the reservoir to recover liquid condensate from natural gas and re-inject the residual gas back into the reservoir, conserving it for future use. Hydrocarbon liquid condenses from the produced natural gas when pressure and temperature are lowered below original reservoir conditions during production at surface processing facilities. ExxonMobil proposes to develop offshore portions of the reservoir using long reach directional drilling techniques from the onshore pads. The produced hydrocarbon liquids (condensate and oil) would be shipped through a new 22-mile long, elevated pipeline from Point Thomson to the existing Badami Development. This pipeline would then tie into the existing Badami common carrier pipeline, which connects with the existing common carrier oil sales pipeline system to the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System Pump Station No. 1. The Central Pad would also include infrastructure to support operations and drilling, such as temporary construction and permanent camps; offices, warehouses, and shops; electric power generating and distribution facilities; diesel fuel, water, and chemical storage; treatment systems for drinking water and wastewater; a grind and inject module; waste management facilities; and communications facilities. Other project facilities, in addition to the drilling pads, would include a gravel airstrip, a bulkhead and dolphins, in-field gravel roads, ice roads, in-field pipelines, and a gravel mine. Dredging may be required at the bulkhead.
a. The Corps invites full public participation to promote open communication on the issues surrounding the proposal. All Federal, State, Tribal, local agencies, and other persons or organizations that have an interest are urged to participate in the NEPA scoping process. Meetings will be held to receive public input on the proposed purpose and need of the project, to identify significant issues and to discuss proposed alternatives. The scoping process will help to further explain the purpose and need plus the alternatives to be reviewed in the DEIS.
b. The DEIS will analyze the potential social, economic, physical, and biological impacts to the affected areas. The following major issues will be analyzed in depth in the DEIS: threatened and endangered species including critical habitat; hydrology and wetlands; fish and wildlife; the construction and operation of the facilities and their effect upon the surrounding communities; cultural resources; socioeconomics; alternatives; secondary and cumulative impacts.
c. The Corps will serve as the lead Federal agency in the preparation of the DEIS. The Environmental Protection Agency, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and State of Alaska Department of Natural Resources are participating as cooperating agencies.
5. The Corps expects to hold scoping meetings in Anchorage, Barrow, Fairbanks, Kaktovik, and Nuiqsut. Further information about these meetings will be published locally, on the project Web site
6. It is anticipated that the DEIS will be available November 2010 for public review.