Discussion of this paper is invited. Three copies of any discussion should be sent to the Society of Petroleum Engineers office. Such discussions may be presented at the above meeting and, with the paper, may be considered for publication in one of the two SPE magazines.


The recent surge of activity above the Arctic Circle has attracted great attention to geology, topography, transportation, ice, and all manner of technical problems. In the rush to take advantage problems. In the rush to take advantage of the resources awaiting us, we tend to forget we are planning for a 25–50 year life of the facilities we build. Someone must stay and live on the site to operate and communicate. It's time to examine our Arctic areas as places to live on a permanent or semi-permanent basis. permanent or semi-permanent basis. This paper is intended to explore a few of the more obvious problems, note the state of the arts as at present, and to some degree, offer a glimpse of future developments.

In order to limit the area of reporting, the discussion herein will deal with only the Arctic Coastal Area.


Referring to the Northland, Robert Service, the Poet Laureate of the Yukon, wrote the following:

"I am the land that listens, I am the land that broods; Steeped in eternal beauty, crystalline waters and woods. Long have I waited lonely, shunned as a thing accurst, Monstrous, moody, pathetic, the last of the lands and the first; Visioning camp-fires at twilight, sad with a longing forlorn, Feeling my womb o'er-pregnant with the seed of cities unborn.

This is the Law of the Yukon, that only the Strong shall thrive; That surely the Weak shall perish, and only the Fit survive. Dissolute, damned and despairful, crippled and palsied and slain, This is the Will of the Yukon,— Lo, how she makes it plain!"

In the preparation of this paper, the author was able to refer to his youth which was spent in the Turner Valley Oil Fields, and to a short-lived career as a roughneck. This career was cut short by a collision with a piece of drill stem which hospitalized him long enough to convince him that further education would be wonderful.

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