NRDC President: Senate’s Tax Scheme Threatens the Wild Arctic Refuge and Clean Energy

WASHINGTON – The Senate today narrowly approved a tax measure that would allow drilling, for the first time, in Alaska’s wild Arctic Refuge, preserves sizable subsidies for the oil and gas industry, and jeopardizes the clean energy revolution.

The following is a statement from Rhea Suh, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council:

“It’s a sorry day for the country. This blows out the debt to enrich those who least need it—and leaves our kids to pay the price. It throws open the majestic and ecologically invaluable Arctic Refuge to irreversible and destructive exploitation by oil and gas drillers. And it spares billions for yesterday’s dirty fuels as it cuts investment for clean homegrown energy.

“Little wonder Senate Republicans rushed the vote: it wouldn’t survive the light of public debate. That’s not government by the people. It’s putting special interests ahead of the national good—and doing it behind closed doors. We’ll hold them to account.”


The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, and Beijing. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @NRDC.