The US Department of the Interior just released another insufficient environmental impact statement for the ConocoPhillips’ Willow oil and gas project. President Biden can still uphold his climate promises by saying no to Willow.
Washington, DC — Today, The US Department of the Interior released a final supplemental environmental impact statement (SEIS) for the proposed ConocoPhillips’ Willow oil and gas project. After a federal district court judge threw out the previous environmental impact statement, citing issues with the environmental analysis, again Interior relies on a swift and insufficient analysis of the proposed project’s impacts on the local community and ecosystems. CCAN Action Fund, the advocacy arm of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, strongly urges President Biden to uphold his climate promises and deny permits.
Statement from Quentin Scott, Federal Director for CCAN Action Fund:
“President Biden campaigned and was elected with a climate mandate. His day-one executive orders and the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act were steps in the right direction. However, approval of the Trump-era Willow Project would undermine our climate goals to lower emissions 50% by 2035. This 30-year project would be equivalent to 76 new coal-fired power plants. Further oil infrastructure development could negatively impact the region’s sensitive ecosystems, wildlife, and food security. This is a clear environmental justice issue and we call on the President to honor his commitments and say no to Willow.”
The Arctic is already warming quickly. The permafrost is melting. As a result, ConocoPhillips wants to artificially refreeze the ground so their extraction equipment won’t sink into the ground. The permafrost, which is never supposed to melt, is melting because of climate change so ConocoPhillips wants to refreeze the ground to extract more oil to continue adding to the climate crisis.
Willow would pollute water and air, disrupt animal migrations, destroy animal habitat, and have destructive impacts for the entire western Arctic region. In addition, would create serious health, environmental, and food security threats to Alaska Native communities. He should choose to protect Alaska’s western Arctic and put the health of local people before the profits of corporations.
The Interior Department via the U.S. Bureau of Land Management must wait at least 30 days before issuing a Record of Decision on Willow. The public can continue to engage with agencies about the proposal and tell President Biden to say no to this destructive project.
# # #
The CCAN Action Fund is the advocacy arm of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, the oldest and largest grassroots organization dedicated exclusively to raising awareness about the impacts and solutions associated with global warming in the Chesapeake Bay region. For 20 years, CCAN has been at the center of the fight for clean energy and wise climate policy in Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, and Washington, D.C.