ICYMI: Widespread Support for the Willow Project from North Slope Mayors, Education Leaders, and Laborers

Washington, DC – The Willow Project on Alaska’s North Slope has garnered widespread support from North Slope leaders, Alaska’s higher education system, the State of Alaska, national labor unions, and more.

Op-Ed: Murkowski, Sullivan, Peltola Urging Biden

To Re-Approve the Willow Project 

In an Op-Ed published in CNN by U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, (R-AK), and U.S. Representative Mary Peltola (D-AK), the Alaska Congressional Delegation highlight the Willow Project’s broad support from Alaskans, economic benefits, national security impacts, and the world-class environmental standards of the project.

The op-ed begins: The Biden administration will soon make a final decision on a major oil drilling project in Alaska — the Willow Project. As the state’s congressional delegation — two Republicans and one Democrat — we represent Alaskans who are united in strong support of the project and urging its swift reapproval.

We all recognize the need for cleaner energy, but there is a major gap between our capability to generate it and our daily needs. Even those who practice a subsistence lifestyle in Alaska — living primarily off the land and water — rely on boats, snowmachines and ATVs, and those all need fuel. In rural parts of our state, gasoline prices have been as high as $18 a gallon. That is crippling — both for our economy and for the practice of traditional livelihoods, which new energy supplies will only help.

We need affordable energy today, and we will need it well into the future. And both are reasons why Willow matters… 

Click here to read the full opinion in CNN.

Op-Ed: North Slope Mayors Underscore

Local Support for the Willow Project


In an Op-Ed published in the Anchorage Daily News by Asisaun Toovak, mayor of the City of Utqia?vik, and Chester Ekak, mayor of the City of Wainwright, the two North Slope leaders call on politicians in Washington, D.C. to listen to the voices of Alaska Native communities on the North Slope and approve Willow without further delay or deferral.

Resolution of Support: UA Board of Regents

Highlight Strong Support for the Willow Project


The University of Alaska Board of Regents passed a resolution last week in support of the Willow Master Development Plan thanks to its economic impact, environmental standards, widespread support by Alaska Natives, and potential to generate revenues that support higher education in Alaska.

Click here for UA’s full resolution.

Letter of Support: Laborers’ International Union of North

America (LiUNA) Urge Reapproval for the Willow Project


In a letter to the Biden Administration, LiUNA General President Terry O’Sullivan shared his support for the Willow Project, which he notes will “develop source for the United States’ energy portfolio, benefit local communities, and put skilled laborers to work.”

Click here for the LiUNA letter of support for the Willow Project’s reapproval. 


Editorial: Wall Street Journal: ‘The Willow Oil Test for Biden’

The Wall Street Journal penned an Editorial Board Opinion Piece, published on March 1, 2023 on the Willow Project in Alaska’s North Slope. The project, which is currently pending the administration’s re-approval, is meticulously-planned, socially-just, and economically-crucial project that has support from Alaska’s Congressional Delegation; Alaska Natives, including those who live on the North Slope; state and national labor groups; and many additional stakeholders. The approval, and economic viability, of the project is dependent on the president’s decision to select the three pads option; anything less would be non-viable and equivalent to a denial.   

To read the WSJ Editorial Board’s op-ed, click here.

Key Excerpts:

ConocoPhillips acquired its first Willow leases in 1999 in Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve (NPR-A), an area the size of Indiana that Congress specifically set aside for oil development. It’s the largest pending oil and gas project in the U.S., with expected production of 180,000 barrels of oil a day, and 600 million over 30 years.

The Willow plan has passed every environmental analysis, would employ union labor and yield a revenue gusher. The final regulatory review was completed in early February, and it’s customary for the feds to give a final go-ahead within 30 days.

The project, which will occupy 0.002% of NPR-A, would use the current Alaska pipeline and uses only temporary roads (built on ice in winter). It’s been signed off by every agency, including Fish & Wildlife and the Army Corps of Engineers.

Willow is also a low-carbon project. BLM’s analysis estimates its average annual total domestic emissions will total 0.15% of 2019 U.S. emissions levels, and 0.3% of anticipated 2030 levels. BLM also notes “in the absence of production from [Willow], energy produced from the Project’s oil would be replaced by other [sources]” around the globe. That includes such green meccas as Venezuela.

Willow is an $8 billion investment that will create 2,500 mostly union construction jobs, and hundreds more long-term positions. It’s estimated to generate as much as $17 billion in new revenue for the feds, the state of Alaska, and North Slope and Native communities.