The Argument Against Drilling In Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)

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Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), the crowned jewel of the nation’s 544 refuges is in danger of destruction (Lamar and Markey 12). ANWR has been in existence since 1960 and has slowly become one of the most controversial topics to hit Congress. ANWR is composed of 19 million acres on the northeast coast of Alaska. Although the government has been provided with this immense land they are fighting to gain more land. Why? ANWR is the second biggest oil field that is owned by the U.S. Now the government wants more land to construct oil reserves. The refuge is home to many endangered species such as migratory birds, polar bears, and wolves (Lynne and Roberts 1). Most of ANWR’s designated oil area is owned by indigenous Alaskan people (Klyza and Ford-Martin 1). Though these are some of the concerns when debating to stop any further drilling, the more prevalent matters to anti-drillers are; the caribou species, duration of changes (benefits), and why keep a bill that contradicts already existing federal acts.

As mentioned earlier, the caribou is a sensitive matter to environmentalist and Alaskan natives. The Porcupine caribou herd is the most concentrated species, 130,000 (Lamar and Markey 12) that roams on ANWR territory. The herd uses ANWR as its calving grounds (Whitten 2008). To each herd there is a distinct calving area (Markey 2004), building a spiritual and survival connection to the land itself. If drilling does continue the number of species will decrease, it has been proven in other caribou locations! The Central Arctic Caribou resided on Prudhoe Bay starting with 23,000 herds after oils reserves began to expand in that area numbers drop to 18,000 (Whitten 2008). ANWR specialists have also figured out that mos...

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...s Resource Center . Gale. GILA RIDGE HIGH SCHOOL. 20 Feb. 2015

Klyza, Christopher McGrory, and Paula Anne Ford-Martin. "Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (1980)" Environmental Encyclopedia. Eds. Marci Bortman, Peter Brimblecombe, Mary Ann Cunningham, William P. Cunningham, and William Freedman. Vol. 1. 3rd ed. Farmington Hills, MI: Gale, 2003. 1 pp. 2 vols. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Gale. GILA RIDGE HIGH SCHOOL. 20 Feb. 2015

Markey, Edward J.. "The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Should Remain Off-Limits to Oil Drilling. ."At Issue: Foreign Oil Dependence. James Haley. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2004. Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center. Gale. GILA RIDGE HIGH SCHOOL. 20 Feb. 2015

Will, George F. "The Biofuel Follies. " Newsweek. 151.06 (Feb 11, 2008): 64. General Reference Center Gold. Gale. GILA RIDGE HIGH SCHOOL. 20 Feb. 2015
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