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Neuman Applauds Dept. of Defense Syn-Fuels Initiative

Federal Defense Energy Support Center spotlights Alaska for alternative av gas

Friday, March 26, 2010, Juneau, Alaska – House Resources Committee Co-Chair Mark Neuman, R-Su-Valley, today applauded the federal government’s efforts to secure a commitment from the State of Alaska to build an alternative fuel production facility in Alaska.

The Defense Energy Support Center, located within the Dept. of Defense’s Defense Logistics Agency, is working on establishing a market and supply for alternative aviation fuels. DESC has already acquired more than 700,000 gallons of synthetic fuels, derived suing the Fischer-Tropsch system. The Center recently announced a working agreement with the Air Transport Association to advance the development and deployment of alternative aviation fuels. DESC and ATA hope to identify production facility locations, with Alaska on the list

“I’d like to thank the DLA’s Mark Iden for re-opening the dialogue on creating a value-added gas industry in Alaska,” Neuman said. “The Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative provides an anchor tenant to an in-state or large diameter gas pipeline, and can position the state as a leader in the aviation fueling industry. The road to development and production will be a long one, but I am hopeful and prepared to continue working with the Parnell Administration and DLA advocating for Alaska’s selection.”

Neuman worked with the Governor’s Office to present the state’s case, and received a letter back from the Agency two weeks ago. Rep. Neuman is currently working on a proposal for a gas-to-liquids plant development plan. United States Navy Commander Rear Admiral Kurt Kunkel wrote that as plans move from the drawing board to identifying requirements and site selection that “if our collective actions identify the Alaska project as viable, I hope that both the DOD and the commercial aviation industry will work together to solicit for alternative aviation fuels in the Alaskan area within the coming year.”

The letters of support are validating, says Neuman, who has focused on value-added manufacturing and production over the past four years. “GTL production, especially with the backing of the Dept. of Defense and ATA, would strengthen and broaden our economy and put thousands of Alaskans to work during construction and on into operation,” Neuman said. “We’re starting to feel the effects of the recently-ended global recession here, and North Slope oil companies – the State’s number one economic driver – are tightening their belts. We must encourage diversification and using our feedstock to provide wealth-building jobs for Alaskans. Oil’s gradual decline means we need to move forward on gas, and value-added industry is one large flag we can wave to make a gasline economic to build.”

The opportunity to use Alaska’s resources to create family-sustaining jobs is something we can’t pass up. Look at the effects on some of our families, where mom and dad have to work practically hand-to-mouth to survive. These jobs are $60-$80-$100 thousand dollar per year jobs – with insurance and benefits. When was the last time we saw large scale job creation, wealth-building job creation in this state?

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