Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and, as has often been the case throughout its history, it has stirred up political conflicts over its use. There are the usual loud claims about what should be done with ANWR. Drilling proponents call for enhanced energy security, environmentalists appeal for ecological integrity, and preservationists have even suggested that it be designated as a national monument. The result is zero-sum political land management–conflict instead of compromise.
One group that is lobbying to prohibit energy development in ANWR is the Audubon Society. Audubon’s president David Yarnold released a statement today urging lawmakers “to keep the Refuge safe from oil and gas drilling,” which imperils wildlife and contributes to the “significant ecological disruption” already brought on by climate change.
(photo credit: mic stolz)