ACTION ALERT

U.S. Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee hearing on ANWR Bill
 Please Email Comments by Wednesday, November 1st

Overview
Passage of the Fiscal Year 2018 budget by the House and Senate has required the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to consider measures to meet its budget instruction. This requirement in turn has presented an opportunity to include an ANWR drilling provision in a budget reconciliation bill by U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski that would allow limited oil and natural gas activity within the non-wilderness coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). The bill would require a simple 51 votes to pass or 50 votes with the Vice President casting the tie-breaking vote.

On Thursday, November 2nd, the Senate committee will hold a hearing about the opportunity the 1002 Area of ANWR holds for our nation. Supportive comments from Alaskans in the official committee record are vital and can make a difference.

Action Requested:
Washington D.C. needs to hear from Alaskans now. Please send a brief email to: fortherecord@energy.senate.gov by Wednesday, November 1st in order to be received prior to the hearing. The committee will accept testimony for inclusion into the record for an additional two weeks following the hearing, but it is urgent Alaskans take action now.

Please address your statement to: “Chairman Murkowski, Ranking Member Cantwell, and Members of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.” Also, please send a copy to annie_hoefler@energy.senate.gov.

Please reference: For Record of November 2, 2017 Hearing

For additional information on the hearing, please visit:
https://www.energy.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/2017/11/full-committee-hearing

Points to consider in your comments:

  • Polls have consistently shown Alaskans overwhelmingly support responsible oil and gas development in the non-wilderness portion of ANWR.  There is no valid reason why we should not be allowed to access the world-class resources within just a tiny fraction of the coastal plain.
  • The proposed ANWR provision would allow development of no more than 2,000 acres of the 1.5 million acres of the Arctic coastal plain – part of the non-wilderness portion of ANWR’s 19 million acres. That is equivalent to just 0.01 percent of the entire refuge.
  • Responsible oil and gas development in this fraction of ANWR will help ensure America’s energy security for decades and allow Alaska – and our nation as a whole – to realize the benefits that come from expanding energy production in Alaska.
  • While renewable energy is a growing part of America’s energy portfolio, it is still projected to account for a minority of American energy production in 2040. New oil and gas production will be required to power America’s economy and can serve as a bridge until renewable energy becomes a dominant energy source decades into the future.
  • Energy production from ANWR has the potential to offset a decline in Lower 48 shale oil production, which is expected to commence in approximately a decade. Without limited oil development on the coastal plain, America will be forced to once again increase its reliance on foreign imports. With limited development in ANWR, America and Alaska can continue to grow the economy and reduce dependence on foreign oil.
  • The U.S. Geological Survey estimates the 1002 Area is North America’s greatest prospect for conventional onshore oil production, with a mean likelihood of containing 10.4 billion barrels of oil and 8.6 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, as well as a reasonable chance of economically producing 16 billion barrels of oil.
  • Alaska’s economic lifeline, the Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline System (TAPS), is now running at three-quarters empty. New oil production from ANWR has the potential to reverse throughput in TAPS, a vital component of American energy infrastructure.
  • Oil development on a fraction of the coastal plain would create thousands of jobs nationwide, generate billions of dollars in government revenue, keep energy prices for American consumers affordable, and further improve energy security for decades into the future.
  • Since the ANWR coastal plain is less than 60 miles from TAPS, development of energy resources there is one of the most environmentally-sound ways to increase oil production in Alaska.
  • Thanks to continuing improvements in technology, practices, and oversight, the oil industry has demonstrated over the past 40 years that North Slope energy development and environmental stewardship can and do coexist. The industry has a proven track record of responsible development in sensitive areas, protecting the environment, wildlife and subsistence needs of local residents.

Please respond by Wednesday, November 1, 2017