The Commission is an independent, quasi-judicial agency of the State of Alaska. It is established under the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Act (AS 31). Its regulatory authority is outlined in Title 20, Chapter 25 of the Administrative Code.
The Commission oversees oil and gas drilling, development and production, reservoir depletion and metering operations on all lands subject to the state's police powers.
The Commission acts to prevent waste, protect correlative rights, improve ultimate recovery and protect underground freshwater. It administers the Underground Injection Control (UIC) program for enhanced oil recovery and underground disposal of oil field waste in Alaska. It serves as an adjudicatory forum for resolving certain oil and gas disputes between owners, including the state. The Commission carries forth statutory mandates consistent with the protection of health, safety and the environment. It strives for cooperation with industry, while maintaining well-defined and essential regulatory requirements.
To protect the public interest in exploration and development of Alaska's valuable oil, gas, and geothermal resources through the application of conservation practices designed to ensure greater ultimate recovery and the protection of health, safety, fresh ground waters and the rights of all owners to recover their share of the resource.
For immediate assistance in the event of a field emergency, please call: (907) 659-2714
The Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Act (1955) created the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (AOGCC or Commission). The Commission was composed of the Governor of the Territory of Alaska, the Territorial Commissioner of Mines, and the Territorial Highway Engineer. Rules and regulations governing Commission activities became effective on October 1, 1958.
Under the State Organization Act of 1959, the Oil and Gas Conservation Commission was abolished, its function and authority transferred to the Department of Natural Resources, Division of Mines and Minerals. A group within the department was designated to hold hearings and issue decisions on oil and gas matters. This group was the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Committee which consisted of the Director of the Division of Mines and Minerals (Chairman), the State Petroleum Geologist, the State Petroleum Engineer, and the Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources.
In 1968 the Division of Oil and Gas was created within the Department on Natural Resources. The new division arose from the Petroleum Branch of the Division of Mines and Minerals. The Alaska Oil and Gas Committee was placed within the new division, and consisted of the Director, Chief Petroleum Geologist, and Chief Petroleum Engineer. In 1976 the word "conservation" was added to the division's title, and it became the Division of Oil and Gas Conservation.
With the advent of production from Prudhoe Bay in 1977, the Legislature became concerned with the potential conflict between the state's revenue interest in high production rates on state leases and the state's conservation interest in protecting total ultimate recovery. To obviate its concern, the Legislature amended AS 31.05 by Chapter 158, SLA 1978 to create a new Commission, effective January 1, 1979, as an independent quasi-judicial agency within the executive branch of the state. Initially, the new Commission was housed within the Department of Natural Resources, but in 1980 it was transferred to the Department of Commerce and Economic Development. More recently, Governor Hickel transferred the Commission to the Department of Administration on February 17, 1994.
Our Resources, Our Past, Our Future: AOGCC - 50 Years of Service to Alaska