TAPS: Supporting Alaska

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TAPS turned 40: What's your pipeline story?

TAPS' 40th anniversary of operations arrived June 20, 2017, and Alyeska is commemorating the milestone all year. At the heart of this celebration are the memories and voices of those who helped build, operate and maintain the pipeline, and the stories of people, families, businesses and communities with unique ties to TAPS. You'll find many of those stories here in the coming months. We'd also love to share your story!

What's your pipeline story?
• What are your favorite moments working on TAPS?
• What has TAPS meant to you and your family?
• What’s your vision for the next 40 years of TAPS operations?
• How has TAPS impacted your community and Alaska?

Share memories, stories and photos by emailing them to All submissions will be entered in a random drawing for very special TAPS 40th anniversary prizes! Alyeska’s Corporate Communications team will contact you for more information if they plan to use your content. #mypipelinestory #40more #TAPSPRIDE

Pipeline Partners: Stantec

From the North Slope to the Valdez Marine Terminal, the Stantec team has provided engineering services for Alyeska’s major facilities for more than 30 years. Tim Vig, Stantec Senior Principal based in Anchorage, recently shared some thoughts on the Stantec-Alyeska relationship and the firm’s role in TAPS operations.

How long has Stantec been connected to Alyeska/TAPS and what services does your team provide?
We’ve been working with Alyeska since the 1980s, providing a full range of architectural and engineering services for a variety of projects. Our engineers have worked from Pump Station 1 down to the marine terminal in Valdez.

We’ve worked with Alyeska on innovative and leading-edge analysis techniques and designs. Our team has shared expertise on transient hydraulics, pipe stress, structural analysis, 3-D modeling, and regulatory issues. We’ve been involved in important long-range planning studies that include topics like: low flow, crude oil heating, water removal, wax and ice mitigation, and recovered crude processing. The projects cover a range of designs, including new construction, lifecycle replacement, and facility removal.

Most recently, we’ve been working on pipe replacement projects and equipment lifecycle maintenance at all the pump stations and marine terminal.

Please talk about the strong relationship and connection your teams have with Alyeska staff and TAPS contractors.
Given Alaska’s small population, it’s not surprising that Alyeska’s and Stantec’s staff members are in many cases former co-workers and team members on projects going back decades. Reconnecting with them to solve new and exciting challenges is quite gratifying and personally rewarding.

What has the success of TAPS meant to your company? 
Stantec is a global leader in the architectural/engineering world, with 22,000 employees on six continents. While a large firm clearly has a lengthy list of clients, the continued success of TAPS, particularly as oil throughput has slowed in recent years, is important to Stantec’s local office and our broader company.

Locally, we have more than 85 employees. We have recently hired nearly a dozen new employees in Alaska to better support Alyeska. While there are challenges because of oil prices and throughput, it is an exciting time to be an engineer in Alaska. Why so? Because engineers thrive on problem-solving.

What has the success of TAPS meant to you as a longtime Alaskan?
Personally, I have lived in Alaska for more than 30 years. I've seen what the oil and gas industry means to our state, providing thousands of jobs, a large measure of economic stability, and advancements in the lives of Alaskans. No doubt about it, TAPS is a big part of the economic fabric of the state. I'd like my kids to have the same opportunities in Alaska as I've had, so it's important to me personally that we help TAPS continue operating safely and economically for decades to come.

Pipeline Partners: CH2M

This year, Alyeska Pipeline Service Company (APSC) is celebrating the 40th anniversary of operations of the 800-mile Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS). Today, the pipeline continues to play a critical role in boosting economic health, community and business partnerships, while demonstrating environmental excellence and stewardship.

CH2M has partnered with APSC for more than 27 years providing engineering and design services, as well as broader management services from procurement to fabrication and construction, and emergency services and equipment as needed.

Click here to read CH2M's story about its long TAPS history and working partnership with Alyeska.

Pipeline Partners: NMS

This story originally appeared in the Summer 2017 issue of NMS' Spirit of the Hunter employee newsletter 

NMS camp services provides a variety of food and facilities management services to Alyeska Pipeline Service Company (Alyeska) – a consortium of the major oil companies that own and operate the Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS). Originally formed to build and operate TAPS in 1970, Alyeska completed construction of the pipeline in 1977, and first oil flowed through the pipeline in the summer of that year. Alyeska has successfully maintained and operated TAPS throughout the 40 years since, and NMS is honored to be a part of such a dynamic and far-reaching task.

"The NMS employees who provide services for Alyeska take great pride in their work," explained Jason Carlson, NMS Vice President of Operations, Camp Services. "They are treated with respect, and the favor is returned in the delivery of outstanding customer service. We're proud of our services and believe our relationship with Alyeska is built on a foundation of mutual respect. We look forward to working together for many years to come."

NMS work teams deliver services at the pump stations along the pipeline and at Alyeska offices and shops in Fairbanks and Valdez, as well as the company headquarters and warehouses in Anchorage. Most of our employees work two weeks on and two weeks off, with fewer employees working on the line during the cold winter months than in summer. 

Line Managers Craig McCloud, Rene Guevara, Carl Barnette and Craig Price supervise operations, reporting to General Manager Richard Moore.

"Craig, Rene, Carl and Craig do an excellent job managing day-to-day operations at the camps," said Richard. "They drive the line constantly to meet and work with NMS employees, ensuring our client receives the quality and consistency of service they require and that we can all be proud of."

All four line managers are highly qualified chefs, too, and occasionally fill in to cook on the line in someone’s absence, guaranteeing seamless, year-round service.

We'd like to recognize and thank Richard Moore and the entire team for their commitment and dedication to our Alyeska client.

TAPS at 40 in the news: Voice of America report

Voice of America's Natasha Mozgovaya recently reported on TAPS' 40th anniversary and the history of North America's largest oil field.

Pipeline Partners: Denali Universal Services

Providing security, medical and firefighting services on a beat that covers 800 miles of rugged and rural Alaska, as well as at a few urban locations, might sound overwhelming. Protecting one of Alaska's, and the nation's, most important pieces of energy infrastructure might sound intimidating. But the members of Denali Universal Services, formerly known as Doyon Universal Services, not only have it covered, they do it with confidence, experience and TAPS pride.

Denali Universal's partnership with Alyeska staff and TAPS contractors dates back more than 17 years and it keeps evolving even as TAPS celebrates its 40th year of operations.

"Denali Universal Services has played a critical role in the success of TAPS for many years and is viewed as an integral part of the TAPS team," said Steve Browning, Alyeska/TAPS Security Director. "They have earned acclaim for their professionalism and key services on TAPS innumerous times. Denali is also known and respected for their efforts to assist TAPS personnel in every way possible and are recognized for their performance, aptitude and attitude."

Bill Gause, Vice President Security, Denali Universal Services recently shared some of his thoughts on the team's work and their role in protecting TAPS workers and the pipeline as it moves into the next 40 years of operations.
How long has Denali Universal Services been connected to Alyeska/TAPS and what services does your team provide?
Since November 1999. In April 2017, our name changed from Doyon Universal Services to Denali Universal Services. Same faces, same services, new name. We are now owned exclusively by Sodexo, a large worldwide corporation. Denali currently provides armed security officers, security tech medics and firefighters to TAPS.

Please talk about the strong relationship and connection your teams have with Alyeska staff and TAPS contractors.
For over 17 years with TAPS, DUS has been through the challenges and the successes that the industry and TAPS have faced. Through several contracting cycles, Alyeska has treated us as a partner and part of the TAPS family. Many of our security officers, paramedics and firefighters have worked on TAPS for 20, 25, 30 years or longer. This is more than a job to them; it is part of who and what they identify themselves with. They introduce themselves, saying, 'I am a security officer of the Trans Alaska Pipeline.' 'I am a paramedic at Pump Station 5.' 'I am a firefighter at the Valdez Marine Terminal.' Their pride in what the do is enormous."
What has the success of TAPS meant to you as a longtime Alaskan?
"No doubt, TAPS is part of the economic lifeblood of Alaska. The oil and gas industry provides jobs and economic security for Alaskan families and the state. The industry and TAPS have greatly contributed to the exceptional quality of life that we all enjoy. It has allowed my wife and I to raise two daughters, send them to college and on their way through life. Both have returned to Alaska for the opportunities that the industry and state provides. One daughter works for Alyeska as an engineer, the other for an Alaska Native corporation as the corporate communications director."
And can you please talk about the bigger picture of Alyeska’s and TAPS' impact on Alaska and its communities?
"Alyeska has always been driven to be a good corporate citizen, to provide jobs and economic security for the people who work on TAPS, to conduct its operations where safety is inherent in everything it does, to protect the environment, and to do the right thing each and every time. That’s something you can’t put a price on. For DUS, it's a quality of life, and together in partnership with Alyeska we're proud of our accomplishments."

Community Connections: United Way of Anchorage

United Way of Anchorage creates and fuels programs that drive positive, lasting change for thousands of Anchorage residents while also engaging volunteers and inspiring advocates. Through its strong partnerships with organizations like Alyeska, its staff is able to elevate work focused on homelessness, school preparedness for children and activities for youth, healthy families and much more.

Alyeska's work with United Way is nearly as storied as TAPS operations – Alyeska has hosted employee giving campaigns and providing matching corporate gifts for 39 years. 

Brian Beauvais, Alyeska Sr. Health and Safety Manager, is co-chairing Alyeska's United Way Campaign for a second consecutive year. He appreciates the powerful impact that Alyeska, TAPS contractors and United Way can make together. 

"Organizing each year as a company to support United Way makes a difference for families all over Alaska," Beauvais said. "We are a TAPS family that reaches out to our community members throughout the state. Alyeska cares about all issues that impact our communities. During the campaign each year, employees can choose a program to support through United Way, and they do a fantastic job dispersing the funding to those in need."

Elizabeth Miller, United Way's Vice President of Resource Development, shared what Alyeska's support, and 40 years of TAPS operations, has meant to her organization and the Anchorage community.

Tell us a little bit about the relationship between Alyeska and United Way.
"In addition to monetary donations, Alyeska company leaders and employees have generously volunteered at United Way. In fact, six of the nine presidents have served as Chair of United Way of Anchorage – including current president Tom Barrett. Susan Parkes, General Counsel of Alyeska, is the current United Way Board Chair. The volunteer efforts continue with other Alyeska employees participating in numerous United Way activities, including Walk for Warmth and Day of Caring."

What has the success of TAPS and the support from Alyeska as an organization and with its individual staff donors and volunteers meant to United Way of Anchorage? 
"Alyeska and its employees and contractors have been some of the strongest supporters of United Way,  with over $20 million in contributions to United Ways in Alaska. In recent years, approximately 45 percent of the funds raised annually are directed to the United Way of Anchorage and its partners. The strong partnership between United Way of Anchorage and Alyeska makes a better Anchorage by creating strategic, scalable solutions toward the goals that develop our community."

Can you share a few highlights that embody the strong relationship between United Way and Alyeska? 
"In the mid to late 1980s, Alyeska led the community and the nation in United Way support. Under the leadership of George M. Nelson, the company and its employees gained national United Way recognition for their record breaking per capita giving rate of over $395 for three consecutive years. One year, as part of the campaign promotion, Nelson rode a white horse down the streets of downtown Anchorage calling out a fundraising challenge to his counterparts at the heritage companies of BP and ConocoPhillips."

"More recently, the 2013 Alyeska campaign coordinators knew that the Anchorage community needs were rising, and to help meet those needs the employees set an ambitious goal of $515,000 for their workplace campaign. This was a sizable increase compared to previous years of giving, but the coordinators came up with an innovative theme linked to the Olympics, including a torch which was a spray-painted gold torch made from a toilet plunger. The torch traveled from Pump 1 to Valdez and each pump station represented a fundraising milestone. The goal was to reach each milestone, resulting in the torch traveling all the way to the VMT. The campaign was wildly successful and the ambitious goal was far exceeded, totaling $644,000 for United Ways in Alaska that year."

#TAPS40: BP's 40 years of Prudhoe Bay and TAPS


There wouldn't be 40 years of TAPS operations without 40 years of Prudhoe Bay production. Check out this cool video from BP America. #PrudhoeProud #TAPS40 #40More

Pipeline Partners: United States Coast Guard

TAPS at 40 in the news: "TAPS After 40 Years," Midnight Oil concludes, and more

E&E News recently produced a TAPS at 40 series that looked at the challenges and successes, politics and people that led to the pipeline being built, as well as gave a glimpse into the future.

Part 1: Big finds, bitter clashes and NEPA: The tale of the Trans Alaska Pipeline

Part 2: How Spiro Agnew helped save the Trans-Alaska project

Part 3: Disaster, decline and hope for an aging mega project

Part 4: The long (long) road to a famous dead end

Alaska Public Media's Alaska Energy Desk wrapped up its well-received eight-part Midnight Oil podcast series recently with a fitting episode exploring the future of TAPS and Alaska: The future of an oil state: What's next for Alaska?

Check out the full podcast series, as well as its many complementary audiograms, sidebar stories and pipeline people profiles here.

Alyeska's 40th special anniversary celebration in Valdez was a big hit. Many residents attended the event, which featured a showing of the 40th anniversary film, "Pipeline," and a panel discussion of Valdez residents and Alyeska employees past and present: Marine Services Transitions Manager Mike Day, Valdez Terminal Director Scott Hicks, retired Alyeska Ballast Water Operations Supervisor Steve Goudreau and Oil Spill Response Coordinator Kate Goudreau. Click here to read the Valdez Star's report on the event.

The August issue of Alaska Business Monthly included a thorough feature by Garrison Wells titled, "TAPS After Forty Years." In the piece, Wells writes about the origins of TAPS, the impact of construction on Alaska and workers, how TAPS fuels Alaska’s economy and the next 40 years of TAPS.

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