The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said Friday it estimates 1.4 Tcf of conventional natural gas resources are technically recoverable in formations west of Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve (NPR-A), the first time such an assessment has been released for the area. 

Despite the North Slope’s abundant petroleum resources, the region is not believed to contain any recoverable oil deposits. The North Slope’s Prudhoe Bay field, for example, remains the most prolific in U.S. history, with more than 12 billion bbl produced, according to BP plc. 

The USGS study suggested that while oil deposits were formed in the NPR-A area, they were transformed when geologic temperatures increased and turned them to natural gas. 

“This new assessment shows that we still have much to learn...