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U.S. cancels remaining leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge – APTN News

Sep 06, 2023

The U.S. Interior Department on Wednesday canceled the remaining seven oil and gas leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge that were part of a sale held in the waning days of the Trump administration, angering state political leaders including Alaska’s Republican governor, who threatened to sue.

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, who is in Ottawa for talks about missing and murdered Indigenous women and residential schools, said that with her decision to cancel the remaining leases “no one will have rights to drill for oil in one of the most sensitive landscapes on earth.”

However, a 2017 law mandates another lease sale by late 2024. U.S. officials said they intend to comply with the law.

Haaland called climate change “the crisis of our lifetime, and we cannot ignore the disproportionate impacts being felt in the Arctic.” She defended U.S. President Joe Biden’s record in addressing the changing climate.

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