Tags: Climate Change | anwr | arctic | oil | lawsuit | drilling

Dem Govs, AGs from 15 States Sue Over Arctic Oil Drilling

protect the arctic refuge protest
(Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 09 September 2020 05:19 PM

The Democratic governors and attorneys general from 15 states are suing the Trump administration to stop it from allowing oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge along the northern coast of Alaska, which was authorized by Congress in 2017.

The lawsuit joins two others filed by environmental and tribal groups, TheHill.com reported.

The plan is to open about 1.6 million acres in the coastal plain region of the refuge’s more than 19 million acres, which according to a 1998 report by the U.S. Geological survey contain between 5.7 billion and 16 billion barrels of oil.

“This plan was rushed. It’s incredibly flawed. There were more than 1 million public comments against it. It fails to fully evaluate and consider the devastating environmental impacts of opening up the coastal plain and it will corrupt one of our nation’s most pristine and uniquely important habitats,” Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey told reporters.

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson is a co-leader along with Healy in the lawsuit, which does not include Alaska.

“In their rush to make this change for special interests, they cut corners,” Ferguson said. 

Other states include California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont, the liberal non-profit Common Dreams reported.

The proposal of drilling in ANWR has been an issue since 1977, when a geologist for British Petroleum testified before Congress about the enormous potential of recoverable oil along the coastal area of the region.

Then the Republican-controlled Congress authorized the drilling when it passed the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.”

President Donald Trump said last month that auctions for leases in ANWR could begin by the end of the year.

“This is a congressionally mandated energy development program that leaves ninety-two percent of the refuge completely off-limits to development,” Interior Department spokesman Conner Swanson wrote to TheHill in an email in August in response to the earlier lawsuits. “The Department’s decision regarding where and when development can take place includes extensive protections for wildlife, including caribou and polar bears.”

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The Democratic governors and attorneys general from 15 states are suing the Trump administration to stop it from allowing oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge along the northern coast of Alaska...
anwr, arctic, oil, lawsuit, drilling
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2020-19-09
Wednesday, 09 September 2020 05:19 PM
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