Joining the Trump administration’s assault on federal lands across America, the state of Alaska is preparing to renew efforts to explore for oil on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Lawmakers are bowing to special interest groups, attempting to forward the sale or transfer of public lands including wilderness areas, wildlife refuges and national forests to state and local governments.
To the native Gwich’in people, the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is “the sacred place where life begins.” But to many Alaska politicians, it’s just the cap on a pool of oil, and they want to open the lid and start drilling.
In Alaska, Jewell will visit with Native leaders, conservation groups. She'll take trips to several of Alaska’s wild and threatened places. This includes an overnight camping trip in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, an area we're fighting to protect.
Despite decades of Americans saying “no” to oil and gas drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska’s governor has proposed a plan that includes seismic testing and exploratory drilling in the very heart of the refuge – the coastal plain.
Think your favorite recreation spot is protected from oil and gas drilling? Not necessarily. In fact, all public lands, including national parks and wildlife refuges, are potentially open to oil and gas leasing, except for areas specially designated as “Wilderness.”