Senate Dems tell Obama to end Arctic drilling

Senate Dems tell Obama to end Arctic drilling

Some Senate Democrats are once again asking President Obama to end oil and natural gas drilling in the Arctic Ocean.

In a letter Friday, 12 senators asked Obama to block any additional drilling after Royal Dutch Shell wraps up its exploratory drilling in the Chukchi Sea, northwest of Alaska, this fall.

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They also press Obama to explain how Arctic drilling fits within his climate policies, a question they said he has failed to answer thus far.

“You have stated many times that America must reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and build our capacity for clean, renewable energy,” the Dems wrote.

“Allowing Shell to expand fossil fuel drilling in the Arctic is incompatible with this imperative and with your commitment that the United States will lead the global effort to address climate change.”

They also cited the risks of an oil spill to the wildlife, natural resources and nearby native communities as further reasons to stop drilling.

“We urge you to change course, and ask for your critical leadership on international Arctic Ocean protection,” they said.

Democrats had pressed Obama multiple times to reject Shell’s drilling application, for which it received approval in May.

Since then, they have repeatedly pushed Obama to change course.

“We continue to hope the administration will reverse its policy to promote drilling in the Arctic,” they said in their Friday letter. “In the meantime, we are concerned that no one has responded to the concerns we raised in our previous letters.”

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