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Sen. Murkowski Calls on Administration to Appeal Decision Halting Chukchi Sea Leases


WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today released the following statement in response to the ruling by a federal judge that the U.S. government failed to follow environmental law when issuing leases in Alaska’s ChukchiSea.

“I'm disappointed by the court's ruling and urge the administration to appeal," Murkowski said. "Shell has done everything in its power to adhere to the strictest environmental standards, including working with the local communities to protect their traditional subsistence activities. Alaska’s offshore resources are vital for the future of both the state’s economy and the energy security of the nation.”

In February 2008, Shell bid more than $2 billion for the right to explore for oil and gas in parts of the ChukchiSea, which has estimated reserves of 15 billion barrels of oil and 77 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. The federal government received nearly $2.7 billion from the sale of 2.76 million acres in Arctic waters in the 2008 sale.
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