Protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
What's At Stake
One of the last unspoiled wild places on earth is at risk of being opened up to oil drilling.
Gray wolves, musk oxen, caribou, and imperiled polar bears roam the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge’s 19.6 million acres. Migratory birds visit from all 50 states and six continents. These lands—first recognized with federal protections 60 years ago—are vital to the culture and survival of the indigenous Gwich’in people, who have relied on the Arctic Refuge for thousands of years.
But in a move that will hasten climate change and have devastating consequences for people, wildlife, and pristine public lands, the Trump administration pushed a reckless plan to begin oil and gas lease sales within the refuge’s coastal plain—an area that the Gwich’in have called “the sacred place where life begins.” At the same time, the administration moved to allow dangerous seismic testing on the coastal plain. Seismic testing would be incredibly destructive to wildlife—taking place in critical habitat for polar bears, right in the middle of denning season—and the fragile landscape.
NRDC has been calling for nationwide opposition and helping to lead the charge against this assault on the refuge, as well as other attempts to drill and destroy public lands and waters in the Arctic region. we will work with Indigenous leaders and the Biden administration to fully protect these lands. The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is the last place for oil and gas drilling.
Call on the Biden administration to take bold action in its first 100 days
Reporting, expert commentary, analysis, and more.
In its first markup of the 116th Congress, the House Natural Resources Committee today approved legislation to restore protections to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Even during a government shutdown, President Trump has somehow found a way to barrel ahead with his project to permanently scar the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge that will send dozens of seismic exploration trucks across the fragile tundra of the refuge’s Coastal Plain.