Alaska, the Willow Project, and the future of fossil fuels
Alaska is no stranger to oil production. But some Americans would prefer that wasn’t the case.
The Biden administration approved a new oil venture on March 13 called the Willow Project. More than 4.6 million people petitioned against its approval.
It allows the energy company ConocoPhillips to drill for oil in the National Petroleum Reserveon Alaska’s Northern slope. The companysays it will produce180,000 barrels of oil per day.
This map shows the Northern Slope of Alaska, including the National Petroleum Reserve, Nuiqsut and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. (Photo by US Fish and Wildlife Service/Getty Images)
The project has been approved, but the Department of the Interior says its scope has been reduced by 40 percent. Instead of five drilling pads, there will be three.
But even a pared down project doesn’t align with President Joe Biden’s climate goals. He made it a point in his 2020 campaign to criticize drilling on federal land.
Many environmentalists say the Willow Project will be a“carbon-bomb.”
We discuss the debate over drilling for oil in Alaska and the future of fossil fuels.
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