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U.S. Geological Survey
Open-File Report 02-119
Online Only
Version 1.1

Frontier Areas and Resource Assessment: The Case of the 1002 Area of the Alaska North Slope

By Emil D. Attanasi and John H. Schuenemeyer


The U.S. Geological Survey’s 1998 assessment of the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge significantly revised previous estimates of the area’s petroleum supply potential.  The mean (or expected) value of technically recoverable undiscovered oil for the Study Area (Federal 1002 Area, adjacent State waters, and Native Lands) is estimated at 10.4 billion barrels of oil (BBO) and for the Federal 1002 Area the mean is 7.7 BBO.  Accumulation sizes containing the oil are expected to be sufficiently large to be of economic interest.  At a market price of $21 per barrel, 6 BBO of oil in the Study area is expected to be economic.  The Assessment’s methodology, results, and the reasons for the significant change in assessments are reviewed.  In the concluding section, policy issues raised by the assessment are discussed.

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This report is preliminary and has not been reviewed for conformity to U.S. Geological Survey editorial standards and stratigraphic nomenclature. Any use of trade, product, or firm names in this publication is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

Contact Information

For questions about the scientific content of this report, contact Emil D. Attanasi.

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