BP Alaska expects to have production at its Northstar oilfield back to normal levels of 60,000 to 65,000 barrels per day by early this week. The company replaced a defective electric motor that drives a gas injection compressor on Sunday and began to ramp up production immediately, said company spokesman Ronnie Chappell. The problems with the compressor had reduced oil production at Northstar to around 8,000 to 9,000 barrels per day from around mid-April. BP Alaska had previously indicated it expected production to be back to normal by the weekend of May 11-12.
The relatively new Alpine and Northstar fields have led to a modest increase in Alaskan oil production over the last year, reversing years of decline. Alaska oil production currently runs at just over 1 million barrels per day. Most of the oil is shipped to refineries on the western coast of the United States.