Press Release

BLM releases flawed Arctic Refuge Record of Decision, reports

Snowy mountains in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Mason Cummings, TWS

BLM reportedly has final plan to drill the Arctic

Arctic drilling plan likely deficient

According to reports by the Wall Street Journal and Washington Post, the administration is taking another step toward holding an oil and gas lease sale for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The federal Bureau of Land Management appears poised to release a Record of Decision outlining its plan for development on the refuge’s sensitive coastal plain.

In response, The Wilderness Society released the following statement from Alaska State Director Karlin Itchoak:

“This is likely a bad Record of Decision resulting from a fundamentally flawed Final Environmental Impact Statement that offered only alternatives that would result in destructive, widespread development on the sacred calving grounds of the Porcupine Caribou Herd. The Gwich’in and Iñupiat people who depend on the herd for their survival—and all Americans—deserve better.

“This is another outrageous move by an administration that ignores science and shortcuts the public process in an irresponsible rush to help oil companies secure leases on the coastal plain before the 2020 presidential election.” Itchoak added. “This fight is not over. We remain committed to keeping drill rigs out of one of the wildest, most beautiful places in America.”


The Wilderness Society is the leading conservation organization working to protect wilderness and inspire Americans to care for our wild places. Founded in 1935, and now with more than one million members and supporters, The Wilderness Society has led the effort to permanently protect 111 million acres of wilderness and to ensure sound management of our shared national lands.    


Tony Iallonardo,
Tim Woody, (907) 223-2443,