WASHINGTON, Nov. 8, 2017 – Today, the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources advanced the Strengthening the Economy with Critical Untapped Resources to Expand American Energy (SECURE Act), a bill that targets every inch of the Arctic coastline and federally designated Special Areas in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska for destructive and unwanted oil and gas development. The legislation now goes to the full House.

Statement from Leah Donahey, Senior Campaign Director, Alaska Wilderness League:

This bill epitomizes everything that is wrong with the current ‘drill everything; drill everywhere’ climate on Capitol Hill. There is not one place too sacred that this Congress will not drill, nor a bill too shameless that this Congress won’t pursue if it means appeasing the oil and gas industry. And the loser is always the American public.

The SECURE Act is a double whammy, targeting common-sense safety protections for Arctic Ocean exploration while simultaneously opening for review the 2013 Integrated Activity Plan for the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. The Reserve’s IAP is a carefully crafted plan that took the Interior Department years to develop, working hand in hand with the tribal community, local governments, the state of Alaska, the Western Arctic Caribou Working Group and others. Upsetting this carefully crafted plan simply to appease the oil and gas industry would be a mistake.

This bill is incredibly irresponsible, bad for wildlife, and bad for America’s public lands and waters.