(JUNEAU) The State Senate Finance committee today continued its discussion of a large natural gas pipeline.
Senate bill 138 was the main topic of dicussion in the committee hearing today.
Federal natural gas pipeline coordinator Larry Persily testified today, saying the markets are there.
He said "China alone is growing their demand for natural gas at a double digit annual rate. In the news of late, Europe is looking for alternatives to russian gas.
Persily said as the world has changed, so has Alaska.
He said "The North Slope is transitioning from an oil only place to oil and gas with Point Thompson coming on line, that will provide 25 percent of the initial gas for this project and more significantly. I've never seen the availability of this kind of money before for the Alaska LNG project. You have producers and it appears the state are willing to put up serious money to see if this project can work. People have talked about it before but never been willing to spend that much."
Persily said it could be that all the right elements are there to make a project work this time.
Senate finance will continue work on the bill this week.