Report Trump to reopen Arctic waters to oil leasing

first_imgMap of previous Chukchi Sea leases. (Image: BOEM)President Trump may soon issue an executive order intended to lift restrictions on oil development in Arctic waters. That’s according to a Bloomberg news story. It cites three unnamed sources who say Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke spoke of it at an industry conference that was closed to reporters.Listen nowThe order would aim to reverse a decision by former President Obama to indefinitely close most U.S. Arctic waters to leasing. Obama used a legal mechanism known as a “12a withdrawal.”  Environmentalists argue it can’t be revoked, so a court challenge is likely.Bloomberg says the White House directive would also press the Interior Department to add Arctic areas to the department’s five-year offshore leasing plan.Alaska’s U.S. senators are also working to re-open Arctic waters to leasing. Thursday, they jointly introduced a bill to repeal Obama’s Arctic withdrawals and require new lease sales.last_img

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