BOEM Publishes Final Environmental Impact Statement for Hilcorp Liberty Project
08-23-2018 ANCHORAGE, Alaska
Contacts: John Callahan
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management today announced the availability of a final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) analyzing the possible environmental impacts of activities proposed in a development and production plan (DPP) submitted to BOEM by Hilcorp Alaska LLC on Sept. 18, 2015.
The Hilcorp Liberty Project DPP proposes building a nine-acre artificial gravel island in the shallow federal waters of the Beaufort Sea, about 20 miles east of Prudhoe Bay. To be located about five miles off the coast, the facility would be similar to the four oil and gas producing artificial islands currently operating in the area’s state waters: Spy Island, Northstar Island, Endicott Island and Oooguruk Island.
The EIS analyzes the important environmental resources and uses that currently exist within the area proposed for the Liberty Project DPP, including bowhead and beluga whale populations and subsistence activities, and identifies mitigation measures to be considered when developing the area. After analyzing a range of alternatives, the EIS identified the proposed action—building a self-contained drilling and production facility on a gravel island with a pipeline to shore—as the preferred alternative. BOEM believes the preferred alternative best fulfills the agency’s statutory mission and responsibilities, considering economic, environmental, technical and other factors.
“After publishing a Draft EIS in August 2017, we conducted hearings in the Beaufort Sea communities of Utqiagvik and Nuiqsut, as well as in Anchorage and Fairbanks,” said BOEM Acting Director Walter Cruickshank. “This Final EIS incorporates input from those communities and the comments we received from other stakeholders, partner agencies and the general public. With that input, our scientists have produced a robust analysis that thoroughly analyzes the potential impacts of Hilcorp’s proposal.”
The EIS and related information can be found at www.boem.gov/liberty. A Notice of Availability (NOA) will be available for review in the Federal Register Reading Room on Thursday, Aug.
30, and published in the Federal Register on Friday, Aug. 31. The Department of the Interior may then sign a Record of Decision relating to the EIS no earlier than 30 days after the NOA publication in the Federal Register.
– BOEM –
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management promotes energy independence, environmental protection and economic development through responsible, science-based management of Outer Continental Shelf conventional and renewable energy resources.