MERKLEY LEADS SENATORS IN CALLING ON WHITE HOUSE TO RESCIND SHELL OIL COMPANY’S ARCTIC PERMIT
Washington, DC – Today, Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley, joined by four other Senators, urged the White House and President Obama to rescind Shell Oil Company’s conditional Exploration Permit in the Chukchi Sea.
Merkley, along with Senators Ed Markey (D-MA), Gary Peters (D-MI), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Martin Heinrich (D-NM) wrote the letter in response to the Administration’s recent decision to conditionally approve drilling by Shell Oil Company in the Chukchi Sea within the Arctic Ocean, highlighting a flaw in Shell’s permit that would put it in violation of wildlife protection and mitigation plans under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.
“Over the past decade, attempts conduct oil and gas exploration in the Arctic Ocean have resulted in controversy, successful lawsuits, and the diversion of government resources,” the Senators wrote. “Shell’s latest permit will be no exception if it is approved despite inconsistences with the requirements of federal agencies.”
“Your administration has both the opportunity and obligation to reexamine past decisions and to follow your own agencies guidelines to protect wildlife, indigenous peoples, and limit greenhouse gas emissions. We reiterate that drilling operations in the Arctic Ocean are unacceptable, and we urge you to rescind Shell’s conditional Exploration Permit in the Chukchi Sea.”