Flawed EIS Released For Arctic Refuge Drilling

This month, the Bureau of Land Management released their Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Coastal Plain Oil and Gas Leasing Program--the plan to drill in the irreplaceable wilderness of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. BLM has selected the most aggressive of their four options, meaning they have chosen to not exclude some areas in order to protect biological and ecological resources. Ironically, this proposal was released the same day as the Senate released their wilderness bill, and a day before the House voted to restrict drilling in the Refuge completely

The final EIS itself denies there is a climate crisis, and instead asserts that warming ecosystems will be better for farming and society in general. 

The BLM does not agree that the proposed development is inconsistent with maintaining a livable planet (i.e., there is not a climate crisis). The planet was much warmer within the past 1,000 years, prior to the Little Ice Age, based on extensive archaeological evidence (such as farming in Greenland and vineyards in England). This warmth did not make the planet unlivable; rather, it was a time when societies prospered.
— FEIS Appendix S at S-686

Additionally, the final EIS acknowledges mass extinctions but says that that climate change (which they deny in other parts of the document) will mask the effects of any oil and gas extraction.

The large magnitude of climate change effects, accompanied by increases in already high climate variability in the Arctic, are likely to overshadow smaller magnitude impacts of oil development. It would be difficult to differentiate among direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts. Extinctions, predicted to increase dramatically and particularly among birds, may alter the avian community with or without oil leasing and development in the ARCP and irrespective of habitat alterations anticipated to result from global climate change.
— FEIS 3-136 

Overall, the final EIS is factually and legally flawed, but now that it has been released, lease sales could potentially start in the next month or two. We are filing a lawsuit to stop the lease sales, but we need your help on the Congressional front. 

Luckily, there are members of Congress and wildlife refuge supporters like you that do not believe the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge should be destroyed for short-term gain.  On September 11, the House passed a bill that would prevent oil and gas leasing, development, production, and transportation to and from the Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  The Senate introduced their partner bill the day before, and we need your help to get it passed.

The National Wildlife Refuge Association has been fighting for decades to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from external forces that would destroy its beauty and the home it provides for numerous species of wildlife.  We will win this fight with your help!