Natural Gas Potential in Alaska

Alaska is endowed with enormous proven natural gas resources. These known resources reside exclusively on the North Slope and in Cook Inlet basin. Outside of these two regions, the presence of natural gas existing in large subsurface traps is unknown. However, several of the non-producing sedimentary basins include geologic characteristics that suggest natural gas accumulations could be present. These include the Copper River, Kandik, Nenana, Yukon Flats, and the North Aleutian basin. These basins are known to include organic-rich rocks that could be source rocks for natural gas if buried to depths within the kitchen where thermal Natural Gas Potential in Alaska transformation can generate hydrocarbons. The onshore portion of the Hope basin includes known coal reserves in the vicinity of Chicago Creek, southeast of Kotzebue. Coal in this area is lignitic and submature for thermogenic gas, but under the right subsurface conditions could generate biogenic methane. It is not known if the requisite conditions for biogenic gas generation have been met in the Chicago Creek area. Other basins have been recognized around the state, including the Minchumina, Holitna, and Selawik basins, but their gas potential is uncertain owing to insufficient high quality surface and subsurface data.

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