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Delegation: Willow Reapproval is Monumental for Alaska


March 13, 2023


(Murkowski)Hannah Ray

(Sullivan)Ben Dietderich

(Peltola)Sam Erickson


Delegation: Willow Reapproval is Monumental for Alaska

Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan (both R-Alaska) and Representative Mary Peltola (D-Alaska) today welcomed the Biden administration’s decision to reapprove ConocoPhillips’ Willow Project within Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve (NPRA). After litigation, a court remand, years of supplemental environmental analysis, and a united statewide push in strong support, the administration’s final Record of Decision reapproves an economically viable three-pad project.

“We finally did it, Willow is finally reapproved, and we can almost literally feel Alaska’s future brightening because of it. After years of relentless advocacy, we are now on the cusp of creating thousands of new jobs, generating billions of dollars in new revenues, improving quality of life on the North Slope and across our state, and adding vital energy to TAPS to fuel the nation and the world,” Murkowski said. “This was Alaska at its very best, with ConocoPhillips, Alaska Native leaders, labor leaders, our unanimous State Legislature, and so many more joining with the delegation to do everything we could to make this happen. I thank the administration for listening to Alaskans, rejecting false claims meant to sink this project, and having the courage to make the right decision on Willow.”

“Today’s Record of Decision (ROD) on the Willow Project is critically important for Alaska’s economy, good-paying jobs for our families, and the future prosperity of our state,” Senator Sullivan said. “This decision is also crucial for our national security and environment. Producing much-needed American energy in Alaska with the world’s highest environmental standards and lowest emissions enhances the global environment. I can’t thank enough all of the Alaskans who got involved in this fight, including our state legislators, union leaders, industry, university and business officials, and thousands of others from diverse backgrounds who came together to promote a brighter future for Alaska. In particular, I’d like to commend the Alaskans who live on the North Slope, whose ancestors have inhabited the lands closest to this project for thousands of years, and who bravely spoke out—even as far-left, Lower 48, eco-colonialist NGOs continued their efforts to silence Alaska Native voices.

“The fight to unleash American and Alaskan energy is far from over. The fact that this Willow ROD comes with the announcement of future legally-dubious resource development restrictions on Alaska lands and waters is infuriating and demonstrates that the Biden Administration’s unprecedented lock-up of our state will continue. With the Willow ROD issued today, we are prepared to defend this decision against likely frivolous legal challenges from the same Lower 48 NGOs who’ve consistently tried to kill the Willow Project. We will do so by working closely with the same Alaska stakeholders who brought us this far. We hope that the Alaska federal judge taking this case hears and respects their voices. Alaskans should take pride in knowing that when we come together and fight together for our common prosperity, our voices cannot be ignored.”

“Today, the people of Alaska were heard,” said Representative Peltola. “After years of consistent, determined advocacy for this project, from people all across the state and from every walk of life, the Willow Project is finally moving forward. I would like to thank the President and his administration for listening to the voices of Alaskans when it mattered most. I would also like to thank Senators Murkowski and Sullivan, and most importantly, our entire movement of Alaska Natives, laborers, state legislators, and everyday Alaskans who never gave up on this goal. Now, it’s on us here in Alaska to make sure that we make the best of this opportunity—that we use the revenues and jobs and economic opportunity from this project to make investments in the future of Alaska. We need to build up our schools, our housing stock, our rural Internet and electric grids, and more, in order to make this a truly 21st-century economy. We can make Alaska a national and global example of what an energy bridge to the future truly looks like, and I am looking forward to meeting this challenge.”

The Department of the Interior’s Record of Decision for the Willow Project is now available here.  

To read the congressional delegation’s recent opinion piece in support of the Willow Project, click here.

To read the resolution the Alaska State Legislature unanimously passed in support of the Willow Project, click here.