Economy

Conoco says Alaska gas pipeline development effort with BP is continuing

Conoco Phillips said Tuesday it hasn't backed away from its efforts with BP to develop a North Slope gas pipeline.

The company clarified its position on its $35 billion gas line project after a London-based Financial Times article quoted the company's chief executive Jim Mulva saying the company will "reassess" the project due to a glut of Lower 48 natural gas.

A Conoco spokesman in Houston said Tuesday that the company hasn't started a new review of the project. It's just continuing with the work it was already doing, he said.

"Clearly, shale gas (in the Lower 48) has changed the dynamics of natural gas in North America," spokesman John McLemore said.

Conoco and BP created a pipeline company called Denali that is competing with a state-backed pipeline project created by TransCanada Corp. and Exxon Mobil to build and operate the proposed North Slope pipeline.

Both pipeline ventures are seeking commitments from North Slope leaseholders -- including Conoco, BP and Exxon -- to ship large volumes of gas through a gas line. TransCanada held its open season to get shipping commitments this summer. Denali's open season ends Monday. The companies involved agree that ultimately, only one pipeline will be built.

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