FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Abby Grehlinger, email@example.com, (856) 340-6656
Biden Administration Approves Major Oil Drilling Operation on Alaska’s Northern Slope
People vs. Fossil Fuels, a national coalition of over 1,200 frontline, climate justice, and progressive organizations, strongly condemned the Biden administration for its decision to approve the Willow Oil Drilling Project – a major oil drilling operation to be constructed on Alaska’s North Slope that has been loudly opposed by the environmental and climate justice community, including Sovereign Iñupiat for a Living Arctic and Alaska Wilderness League.
The decision ignores widespread opposition that grew rapidly since Feb. 1st, when the Biden administration signaled it would approve the project in the release of its final environmental impact statement. In the month following, over 2.3 million new comments were submitted to the White House urging President Biden to deny the project. A Change.org petition grew overnight, reaching over 3.2 million signatures, the largest environmental petition the site has seen in years. #StopWillow videos from a diverse array of young creators went viral online, with an estimated 200+ million views across social platforms.
The Willow Oil Project locks us into decades of fossil fuel pollution at a time when we desperately need to stop all new fossil fuel projects and begin rapidly phasing out existing production. The approval is a denial of climate science, and directly contradicts the administration’s commitment to protect wilderness areas in Alaska from resource extraction and Biden’s own stated climate goals.
In response, People vs. Fossil Fuels released the following statement:
“Global scientists have been absolutely clear: We must end fossil fuel expansion if we are going to avoid irreversible climate devastation and immediate harm to frontline communities. Approving a massive new oil drilling project that is estimated to release 280 million metric tons of greenhouse gasses when we are already in a climate emergency is signing away our future.
“Biden’s presidential powers allow him to reject all new fossil fuel projects and declare a climate emergency that would ensure the survival of our communities and our planet. Instead, he is choosing to fatten the wallets of Oil CEOs by expanding fossil fuel infrastructure that will drive us further into climate chaos.
“The fight to #StopWillow and all new fossil fuel projects isn’t over. Our movement to fight fossils is continuing to grow – and we’ll continue to fight for a livable future in line with science and justice.”
Click here to read SILA’s full statement on the Willow project approval.