JUNEAU, Alaska – One of two companies planning to build major natural gas pipelines in Alaska has dropped its bid, saying Tuesday that it didn’t secure the support necessary to justify going forward with its project.
The announcement from Denali-The Alaska Gas Pipeline raised questions about the prospects for building a long-hoped-for line in Alaska. For years, Alaskans have dreamed of a gas line as a way to help shore up revenues as oil production declines, create jobs and provide a more reliable source of energy. But Denali cited changes in the market – lower gas prices, the rise of North American shale – as making it tough to get the commitments they needed to move forward.
The Denali venture had been competing with a plan to build a line by TransCanada Corp., which says it is continuing efforts to move its project forward. TransCanada has progressed with state financial support, something Denali never received. A company official, Scott Jepsen, doesn’t believe it would have made a difference in the Denali decision.
Like TransCanada, Denali has been working since last year to secure shipping agreements necessary to advance its project. But Jepsen said it wasn’t successful in doing so and Denali was cutting its losses.