Politics

Alaskan Lawmakers Blast Biden’s ‘Outrageous’ Decision To Halt Arctic Drilling

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Top elected officials for Alaska slammed President Joe Biden’s decision to freeze oil development in an Arctic oil preserve.

The Biden administration suspended oil and gas leases in the 1002 Area, a federally-designated oil preserve, of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) on Tuesday, reversing a Trump administration achievement in opening up the area after decades of lobbying by Alaska officials.

“The Biden administration’s actions are not unexpected but are outrageous nonetheless,” Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) said. “Suspending leases in Alaska’s 1002 Area is in direct conflict with the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, through which Congress mandates an oil and gas leasing program be established on the non-wilderness Coastal Plain, and ordered at least two lease sales by 2024.”

Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) added: “DOI’s announcement suspending leases in the 1002 Area goes against the law, facts, the science, and the will of the Native communities on the North Slope. It is nothing more than a naked political move by the Biden administration to pay off its extreme environmental allies.”

The closure of the 1002 Area “disregards that fact-based scientific work, as well as the property interests of those who hold these leases, including the State of Alaska,” Sullivan continued. “It also utterly disregards BLM scientists and Alaskans from across the political spectrum — Republicans, Democrats, Independents, unions, working families, as well the Alaska Natives who live closest to the area and who fought for decades for the right to allow for the responsible development of the 1002 Area of ANWR in order to strengthen our communities and build a better life for o… (Read more)

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