ANWR Exploration Resolution Gains National Support
National Conference of State Legislatures approves AK delegation’s measure
Friday, December 2, 2011, Tampa, Florida – Alaska scored a major victory for responsible exploration and development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) 10-02 coastal plain today.
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) full membership at its Fall Forum voted 22-3 supporting oil and gas exploration and development in ANWR. It is now a policy directive for NCSL.
“It’s critical that we develop Alaska’s energy resources to benefit our state and nation,” Rep. Dan Saddler, R-JBER/Eagle River, said. “I’m honored to make our case to other state legislators and I’m very pleased that the NCSL gave us their support on the policies developed by representatives [Carl] Gatto and [Lance] Pruitt, opening ANWR to responsible oil and gas development.”
The NCSL Agriculture and Energy Committee yesterday approved the resolution of support – 10-1 – for ANWR development sponsored by Rep. Gatto, R-Palmer. The resolution would put NCSL on the record for the first time as backing ANWR developments’ inclusion into the national energy security and policy discussion.
Rep. Dan Saddler, R-JBER/ Eagle River, presented the resolution on Rep. Gatto’s behalf. Gatto is the Vice-Chair of the Ag/ Energy Committee, but could not attend the conference for personal reasons.
The resolution passed 10-1, and was forwarded to the NCSL membership.
“Representatives Saddler and Gatto are to be commended for their efforts to bring this nationally-critical issue before our peers here at NCSL,” House Speaker Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski, said. “We’ve been beating the ‘Open ANWR’ drum over the years, but this is the first time we’ve been able to get the support of our fellow state legislators.”
The draft policy resolution states:
“The oil and natural gas industry is central to the security and future of the United States; NCSL supports conservation and use of alternate fuels, but additionally believes that for the foreseeable future increased domestic oil production is essential to meet the nation’s energy requirements. Increasing domestic energy production while at the same time reducing dependence on foreign supplies are the best way to meet our strategic and economic well-being.
“The National Conference of State Legislatures supports hydrocarbon exploration and development in the congressionally-designated 10-02 area of the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, as part of our national energy policy.”