In Alaska, Another Irving-Based Oil Company Goes Shootin' at Some Crude

Pioneer's gravel island in Oooguruk, Alaska, into which it expects to drill some 40 oil wells.

On the very morning Irving-based ExxonMobil reports record second-quarter earnings -- $11.7 billion, which still wasn't enough for Wall Street -- comes news that the company's looking to sink its drills back in Alaska by year's end. But there's another local player looking for milkshakes out in The Last Frontier: Pioneer Natural Resources, also based out of Irving, which set up shop in Oooguruk (which looks lovely) in 2002 as the first independent oil producer in Alaska and sold its first barrels only last month.

Notes the subscribers-only Lloyd's List story, the field's out of commission at the moment -- some maintenance issues, to be expected that far north -- but when it's back online by year's end, it's expected to produce 20,000 barrels per day by 2010. And: "Pioneer expects to drill up to 40 wells into the Oooguruk oil field, which lies five miles offshore in [five feet] of water, over the next three years from the gravel island it built in 2007." Seems to be working out well for Pioneer: Scott D. Sheffield's company's stock shot up $4.36 yesterday, to $62.14. --Robert Wilonsky

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