Murkowski Says Trump On Board With Opening Arctic To Development

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, attending the CERAWeek conference in Houston last week, spoke to Bloomberg about the what she is hearing from the new Trump administration on resource development in the Arctic:

(Bloomberg) — Senator Lisa Murkowski said President Donald Trump is interested in opening up new coastal waters for oil and gas drilling and reversing Obama-era policies that restrict energy development in Alaska.”

Both Trump and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke are weighing ways to expand opportunities to drill in Arctic waters though the changes could take years to accomplish administratively, Murkowski said in an interview on the sidelines of the CERAWeek conference in Houston.

“It’s fair to say we are looking at how we might be able to — how the administration might be able to — allow for opportunities within this important area, offshore Alaska,” Murkowski said.

Murkowski, who heads the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, joined her fellow Republican senator from Alaska, Dan Sullivan, in a meeting with Trump and Zinke earlier this week to discuss the issue. Trump “clearly understood the impact of taking off-line” oil and gas development in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas north of Alaska, Murkowski said.

“What was very clear was a recognition that what Alaska has to offer is considerable, important and we need to be working to undo much of what the Obama administration did in terms of locking up these resources,” Murkowski said of her talks with Trump.

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About the Author

Casey Reynolds
Reynolds served as communications director for the Alaska Republican Party from 2008-2011. He left the Party in 2011 to host his own popular morning radio political talk show on AM750 / FM103.7 KFQD. Reynolds now runs The Midnight Sun (midnightsunak.com), crowned by the Anchorage Press as “Alaska’s best political blog.”
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