George Edwardson: Development plan is good for subsistence

"As the president of the Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope (ICAS), the regional tribe for eight villages in the North Slope Borough, it is my duty to stand up for the Inupiat people and our way of life. It is what I was elected to do. Our tribe, along with 29 other tribes, village corporations, city governments, and regional native nonprofits have all passed resolutions advocating for conservation of the important wildlife habitat and subsistence zones in the NPR-A.

The Western Arctic Caribou Herd is the largest herd in Alaska and it calves right in the Utukok Uplands of the NPRA. The herd feeds as many as 40 villages in the region - all the way down to the Bering Sea. Teshekpuk Lake, Peard Bay, and Kasegaluk Lagoon are important waterfowl nesting and subsistence areas. Our people have hunted here for thousands of years. Our food security comes from these places.

Recently, the State of Alaska and some corporate interests have been criticizing the Obama administration's management of oil and gas resources in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A). It's no secret that the reserve has oil and gas deposits. I should know. As a geologist for Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, I surveyed the entire North Slope for oil, gas, and minerals in the 1970's. If anyone knows where the oil is on the North Slope, it's me."

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George Edwardson: NPR-A plan is good for development, wildlife and subsistence culture (The Anchorage Daily News 11/17)

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