Biden approves Alaska oil drilling bill
Willow Initiative expected to cost $8 billion; promises to produce a maximum of 180,000 barrels of oil per day
The President of the United States, Joe Biden, approved this Monday (13.Mar.2023) an oil and gas extraction project in Alaska that should cost US$ 8 billion. Here is the full text of the decision (43 KB, in English).
Known as Willow, the drilling initiative by US company ConocoPhillips will be carried out in the US State’s National Petroleum Reserve, in the North Slope district. The region is the largest expanse of virgin land in the country.
According to a statement from ConocoPhillips, the project will be able to produce a maximum of 180,000 barrels of oil per day “decreasing U.S. dependence on foreign energy supplies”.
In addition, it is expected to create $8 billion to $17 billion in federal and state government revenue and 2,500 jobs. Here is the full text (123 KB, in English).
Biden’s government, however, did not approve the company’s original project. Instead of 5 extraction wells, it gave approval for only 3. The measure also establishes that ConocoPhillips will return to the government about 68,000 hectares leased in the region. There is no word yet on when operations will begin.
According to US Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management reportburning all the oil that must be produced could release nearly 280 million metric tons of carbon emissions into the atmosphere.
Annually, that would be 9.2 million metric tons of carbon pollution — equivalent to adding nearly 2 million cars to US roads each year. Here is the full text (7 MB, in English).
The United States is the 2nd country that pollutes the most, second only to China. It emits nearly 5.6 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide annually.