U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, and Rep. Don Young, all R-Alaska, this week wrote a letter urging the Department of the Interior to finalize the supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for ConocoPhillips’ Willow Master Development Plan in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A).
Below are excerpts from the delegation’s letter:
“There is no doubt the COVID-19 crisis has introduced challenges to business operations, but we understand BLM has been extraordinarily responsive to these challenges to engage all interested parties in the review and development of the supplemental EIS. A critical part of our recovery from this crisis is for agencies, like BLM, to ensure that economic development and infrastructure projects have the permits they need to move forward and that reviews are not delayed or deferred.
“It is also important to acknowledge this is a supplemental EIS. It is being developed due to the request of the applicant to modify their project in response to community engagement, including feedback gathered during the extended 60-day public comment period for the underlying EIS at the end of last year.”
Read the full letter here.
The Willow project is a potential multi-billion dollar development proposed by ConocoPhillips in the NPR-A, which the U.S. Geological Survey estimates contains an estimated 8.7 billion barrels of undiscovered, technically recoverable oil. The project could result in the production of 130,000 barrels of Alaska oil per day while supporting thousands of well-paying jobs and generating critical revenues for every level of government.