An internal investigation from ConocoPhillips into a recent gas leak at a site in Alaska’s North Slope points to extreme pressure that caused well equipment to fail, releasing a pocket of gas to the surface.


The report comes more than two months after a leak occurred at one of the Houston-based independent’s oldest Alpine Field drilling pads in the resource-rich North Slope. A leak was detected on March 4 during drilling and released an estimated 7.2 MMcf of natural gas until the company could route the flow to a disposal well on March 8.

The company identified the leak source as a shallow pocket underground that previously went unnoticed in surface scans. Shortly after a critical piece of the well failed, gas was detected from several areas around the well.

After the...