Articles & Op-eds


Op-Ed: Open the Outer Continental Shelf to energy exploration

Since 2005, Shell Oil has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to buy leases in hopes of being able to explore for oil off the coast of northern Alaska. Based on past drilling, the area has proven oil deposits and seemed to be a sure bet for increasing domestic oil supply. But so far Shell has not been allowed to look for oil, much less extract a single barrel of it. Why? Because we have created a regulatory and permitting process covering offshore energy development for most of the nation that… Continue Reading


Op-Ed: Law of the Sea Treaty

Recent actions by Russia, Canada and other northern tier nations to strengthen or establish claims in the Arctic Ocean underscore why it's so critical for the United States Senate to ratify the Convention on the Law of the Sea. Otherwise, we may be watching from the sidelines as other nations divvy up the energy resources of the Arctic seabed. It is believed that the Arctic may hold 25 percent of the world's undiscovered oil and gas, a number that could rise considerably as additional survey wor… Continue Reading


Op-Ed: Plow energy revenue windfall into renewables and power transmission systems

Everyone in Alaska knows that the current record prices for fossil fuels are a two-edged sword. They are fattening the state's treasury while shrinking Alaskans' pocketbooks and driving "energy refugees" from villages as fuel costs pass the point of endurance. Everyone in Alaska also knows that as the Legislature heads into another special session, the State must help Alaskans deal with the current energy crisis. But when you are up to your neck in alligators sometimes it's easy to forget that t… Continue Reading


Op-Ed: On this date in 1958, Senate vote secured Alaska's future

Fifty years ago, hope and excitement were running high in the United States Senate as lawmakers approached the final hours of a marathon debate on Alaska statehood. Some of the Senate's most distinguished members had weighed in on the issue, including John F. Kennedy, Everett Dirksen, Henry "Scoop" Jackson, Warren Magnuson, Mike Mansfield, Strom Thurmond and President Bush's grandfather, Prescott Bush.Opponents contended that it set a bad precedent to admit a noncontiguous state to the Union, wh… Continue Reading


Op-Ed: Prevention is the Key

We are all familiar with the saying, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." When it comes to health care in America, it shouldn't be just a saying, but a rule to live by. Type 2 diabetes rang up $174 billion in costs in 2007. Obesity has direct and indirect costs of $123 billion each year. Heart disease and stroke take the lives of nearly 2,400 Americans each day, with a projected cost of $448 billion in 2008. The unfortunate reality of these statistics is that much of the $2.3 trill… Continue Reading


Op-Ed: Competitive Foods and Child Obesity

by Senator Murkowski

In the past few months we've heard much about a slowing economy and the rising cost of living. One of the biggest drivers is the ever-increasing cost of health care. Americans want action on controlling out-of-control medical care costs-for prescription drugs, to doctor's visits, to hospital visits. They want to know that their own financial futures are not put at risk by these rising prices, and they want to know that their children's future is not jeopardized by the rising costs of Medicare an… Continue Reading


Roll Call: Carbon-free nuclear power in a crisis just when it’s most needed

by Benjamin J. Hulac

The Barakah nuclear power station, a four-reactor plant in the United Arab Emirates, is expected to go online later this year. Billed as the first commercial nuclear project in the oil-rich Arab world, Barakah will generate enough electricity for a major city - 5.6 gigawatts, at a cost of about $24 billion. It will be one of more than 100 new nuclear plants being built around the world, including many "small modular reactors" capable of powering cities, campuses or rural areas without producing… Continue Reading

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