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Shell Alaska News and Events

Why Shell is betting billions to drill for oil in Alaska

This summer, the energy giant will begin exploring off the icy coast of Alaska.

FORTUNE -- Pete Slaiby is eating breakfast with an Eskimo businessman at a Mexican restaurant across the street from the Arctic Ocean when two Coast Guard admirals happen to walk in. It's 8 a.m. on a Tuesday in late March.

Outside the temperature is an extremity-tingling, -35° F. Look 100 yards north, and it's not at all clear where the snow-covered land ends and the ice-covered ocean begins. Slaiby, Royal Dutch Shell's vice president for Alaska, rises to give the Coast Guard brass a warm welcome before they grab a nearby table.

"Welcome to Barrow," he says wryly as he sits back down to his plate of huevos and reindeer sausage.

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