Murkowski, Sullivan, Peltola Secure New White House Commitments on Willow
WASHINGTON—U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan (both R-Alaska), and Representative Mary Sattler Peltola (D-Alaska), today released the following joint statement after a meeting at the White House about the Willow Project on Alaska’s North Slope.
“We met today with senior officials from the White House, Department of the Interior, and Department of Labor regarding Alaska’s Willow Project, our second meeting in the past ten days. The Administration committed to having a final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement released by the end of January 2023, and the Record of Decision completed by the end of February 2023. That commitment includes all federal agency work required to comply with applicable laws in the permitting process. During the meeting, we urged the Administration to select Alternative E, which is responsive to the Alaska District Court’s ruling, and reiterated that approval of a project that is not viable would be viewed as a denial. We also underscored the strong support the Willow Project has among all Alaska stakeholder groups, including Alaska Native communities, as well as labor unions and building trades.”
- On September 20, the Alaska delegation sent a letter to Interior Secretary Deb Haaland urging the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to complete the permitting process for the Willow Project in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska (NPR-A) by the end of the year, in time for the winter construction season.
- In July 2022, BLM Alaska issued a draft supplemental environmental impact statement (SEIS) for the Willow Project.
- On July 15, 2022, Senators Murkowski and Sullivan wrote a letter to Secretary Haaland reiterating their strong support of the Willow Project and urging the Department of the Interior to promptly approve it.
- On March 8, 2022, Senators Murkowski and Sullivan and the late Congressman Don Young (R-Alaska) wrote a letter to Secretary Haaland urging the Department of the Interior to expeditiously complete an SEIS and re-approve the Willow Project.
- On May 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Justice filed a brief with the U.S. District Court for Alaska defending the Willow Project. After reviewing the final ROD for the Willow Master Development Plan (MDP), approved in October 2020 by the Trump administration, for consistency with the Biden administration’s initial executive orders on addressing climate change, the administration found the ROD legally sufficient. The filing followed weeks of advocacy and outreach by the Alaska delegation to President Biden and his administration.
- On April 26, 2021, the municipal mayors of Utqiagvik, Wainwright, and Atqasuk—three communities located within the boundaries of NPR-A—wrote to Secretary Haaland asking her to allow the Willow MDP to move forward.
- On April 21, 2021, George Edwardson, president of the Iñupiat Community of the Arctic Slope, wrote to Secretary Haaland in support of the Willow MDP.
- On April 15, 2021, North Slope Borough Mayor Harry Brower, Jr. and Alaska Natural Resources Commissioner Corri Feige wrote to Secretary Haaland urging her to allow responsible oil and gas development on federal lands in Alaska to proceed.
- On February 13, 2021, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals extended a District Court injunction of the Willow MDP, pending appeal.
- On February 1, 2021, the U.S. District Court for Alaska issued an injunction on the Willow MDP.
- On October 27, 2020, BLM issued the ROD for the Willow MDP.
- On August 14, 2020, BLM published the final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Willow MDP.