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WASHINGTON D.C.-Both Senator Lisa Murlowski and Representative Don Young responded to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and Enforcement's issuing of a conditional approval of Shell's revised exploration plan regarding the Beaufort Sea today. Shell has been seeking approval since 2005.
Shell’s project will still need to secure approvals from the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Shell also needs drilling permits from the Interior Department as well.
Senator Murkowski had this to say, “Shell has been working to secure approval of this plan for over five years. This is another positive step forward, and I’m hopeful that they will soon be able to move forward with exploration and production in the Beaufort.” She went on to say, “If this plan is allowed to advance this time, it could help address many of our most pressing challenges, creating tens of thousands of new jobs, generating hundreds of billions of dollars in new tax revenues, reducing our dependence on foreign oil, and improving our trade balance.”
Congressman Don Young also weighed in, saying, “Today’s decision by BOEMRE is an important development for Alaska. I have always said that with less oil flowing through the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and North Slope production declining, it’s crucial to Alaska’s economic future that we start developing new areas in Alaska. Shell has invested billions of dollars and worked very hard with both state and federal officials in developing a plan to drill offshore in Alaska. While today’s decision by BOEMRE is a welcome one, I remain cautiously optimistic that the Obama Administration will issue the necessary permits and authorizations needed in order for Shell to start drilling on time a year from now.”
Shell’s revised Exploration Plan calls for drilling up to four shallow exploration wells in the Beaufort Sea.
Source: Office of Senator Murkowski