Migratory birds, caribou, polar bears and walruses are among the Arctic wildlife that will stay protected under bills advancing in Congress.
On May 1, a House panel approved a bipartisan bill that would block drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, repealing a 2017 measure that opened the refuge to drilling. And in the Senate, on May 16, Sen. Jeff Merkley (Ore.) introduced the Stop Arctic Drilling Act, which would prevent any new or renewed leases for oil development in the Arctic Ocean planning area.
“The Arctic Ocean is our most vulnerable coastline, and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is the crown jewel of our public lands system,” said Steve Blackledge, senior director of our national network’s Conservation program. “To risk these places—and the wildlife that call them home—for just a little more oil would be unconscionable.”
Our national network’s advocates are building support in Congress for these vital protections.
Photo: Two bills currently in Congress could be great news for polar bears and other Arctic wildlife. Credit: Arthur T. LaBar via Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)