A camp for exploratory drilling at the potential location of the Willow oil field in Alaska.
ConocoPhillips’ massive Willow oil drilling project on Alaska’s North Slope moved through the administration’s approval process for months, galvanizing a sudden uprising of online activism against it, including more than one million letters written to the White House in protest of the project and a Change.org petition more than 3 million signatures.
NEWS TAKEN FROM CNN
What is the Willow Project?
The National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska’s North Slope is home to ConocoPhillips’ Willow Project, a vast and multi-decade oil drilling operation.
Up to 600 million barrels of oil are located in the project’s proposed region. Since the facility has not yet been built, it would take years for that oil to reach the market.
Who started the Willow Project and when?
Energy company ConocoPhillips, headquartered in Houston, has been looking for oil and drilling for it in Alaska for a long time. Despite the fact that the company’s two active projects are more petite than Willow’s, they are the only ones presently engaged in oil drilling operations in Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve.
ConocoPhillips first proposed Willow, which the Trump government initially approved in 2020. ConocoPhillips was given the go-ahead to build five drill pads, but the Biden administration eventually decided to reduce that number to three. The firm will be able to drill about 90% of the oil they are pursuing using three pads.
According to two government sources who spoke to CNN, the Biden administration believed that because Conoco has active and legal leases in the region, it was powerless to stop the project. According to the sources, they came to the conclusion that it would have been against the law to completely refuse or significantly scale back the project. They might have been subject to severe fines as well as legal action from ConocoPhillips if they had chosen to explore those options.
When might drilling for hydrocarbons at Willow start?
Construction on the Willow project can now get started thanks to the Biden administration’s approval. for for for her. for her……………..
On January 10, 2023, in Washington, D.C., a group of environmental activists assemble to demand that President Biden stop the Willow Project by raising a banner on Lafayette Square in front of the White House.
StopWillow is dominating TikTok. Can it really function?
An environmental law organization called Earthjustice is anticipated to file a lawsuit against the project soon. They’ll probably ask for an injunction to try to stop it from moving forward.
What could the legal arguments be against Willow?
There will almost definitely be legal action against The Willow Project. Earthjustice has informed CNN that it is putting together a complaint and has already begun laying out its legal justification. According to Earthjustice, the Biden administration has the authority to protect surface resources on Alaska’s public lands, including taking actions to lessen carbon pollution that Willow would ultimately increase.
According to Jeremy Lieb, a senior attorney for Earthjustice based in Alaska, “our clients and we don’t see any acceptable version of this project, we think the [environmental impact] analysis is illegal,” according to a prior interview with CNN.
Who is the Willow Project’s backer?
The initiative, according to the state’s legislators, will increase domestic energy production, generate jobs, and reduce the nation’s reliance on foreign oil. On March 3, President Joe Biden and his top advisers met with the three members of Alaska’s bipartisan congressional delegation to urge them to support the initiative.
A coalition of Alaska Native groups on the North Slope also favors the proposal, saying it could be a much-needed new source of revenue for the region and fund services including education and health care.
The chance to continue this investment in the communities is provided by Willow, according to Nagruk Harcharek, head of the advocacy organization Voice of the Arctic Iupiat, who spoke to CNN. We depend on the state and the federal government without that money and income stream.
The global crisis: Would the Willow Project be detrimental?
According to projections made by the government, the project would produce enough oil to add 2 million more gas-powered cars to the road each year, or 9.2 million metric tons of carbon pollution that warms the planet.
This poses a serious threat to the climate and is inconsistent with the administration’s pledges to address the issue, according to Jeremy Lieb, a senior attorney located in Alaska with the environmental advocacy organization Earthjustice, who spoke to CNN. Groups are also worried that the project could destroy the habitat for native species and change the migration patterns of animals, including caribou, in addition to their worries about a rapidly warming Arctic.
Supporters of the Willow project, including legislators from Alaska, promise that it will generate fossil fuel in a more environmentally friendly manner than importing it from other nations like Saudi Arabia or Venezuela.
“Why aren’t we getting [oil] from a resource where we know we have the best environmental record in the world?” Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a Republican from Alaska, said.