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Alaska Orders Pipeline Co.’s to Pay

November 28, 2002

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) _ A state commission has ordered the companies operating the trans-Alaska oil pipeline to pay refunds to Alaskan refineries for overcharging them from 1997 through 2000.

The amount was not specified in the decision announced Wednesday, although the Regulatory Commission of Alaska said it believes oil companies had made an extra nearly $10 billion from Alaska refiners during the years 1977 to 1996.

The order directed Amerada Hess Pipeline Corp., BP Pipelines (Alaska) Inc., Exxon Mobil Pipeline Co., Phillips Transportation Alaska, Inc. and Unocal Pipeline Co. to set a more reasonable rate for the coming years.

Commissioner James S. Strandberg said commissioners could not comment because the order is being litigated.

The order arose after two companies claimed that the 1997 rates for transporting oil to their Alaska refineries over the pipeline system was unreasonable.

Even though 90 percent of the oil produced in Alaska is carried by tankers to West Coast markets, some of it is removed from the pipeline and sold in local markets.

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