Alaska Natives criticize new analysis on drilling in Arctic Ocean
A coalition of Alaska Natives and environmental groups said the Obama administration still hasn't addressed the impact of off-shore drilling in the Arctic Ocean.

The Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope, REDOIL and the Native Village of Point Hope filed a lawsuit when the Bush administration approved oil and gas leases in the Chukchi Sea. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, which was created by the new administration, issued an updated analysis of development but Alaska Natives said it doesn't go far enough.

"We are dismayed that the agency has rushed out an incomplete analysis that does not fill any of the gaps found in the 30 pages of material where the federal government admitted enormous data gaps about basic biology and habitat use of endangered whales, threatened polar bears, walrus, seals, sea birds, migratory birds, fish and other species that live in the Arctic Ocean," the coalition said in press release.

The BOEMRE said it will hold public meetings in Native villages before issuing a final supplemental environmental impact statement. The news came as President Barack Obama lifted a temporary moratorium on off-shore drilling.

Get the Story:
Agency releases new Chukchi drilling assessment (AP 10/12)
Alaskans call for end to Arctic drilling freeze (AP 10/12)
U.S. lifts ban on deep-water drilling (The Washington Post 10/13)
White House Lifts Ban on Deepwater Drilling (The New York Times 10/13)

Relevant Documents:
Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Chukchi Sea Planning Area Oil and Gas Lease Sale 193 (October 2010)

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