A federal judge on Wednesday voided the permits for a ConocoPhillips oil project in Alaska's North Slope.
Why it matters: The ruling deals a blow to the Willow oil project, which could produce up to 160,000 barrels of oil per day, after the Trump administration approved drilling for it. The government's support for the project continued into Biden's presidency.
- President Biden has pledged to move away from fossil fuels.
- Environmental groups sued the government in 2020 to halt the project, arguing that it didn't take into account climate change considerations and that it underestimated how much harm the plan would cause to wildlife.
- They argued that the Willow drilling project in part of the National Petroleum Reserve would have on wildlife and climate-change, a
The bottom line: U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason wrote in the 110-page ruling that the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service incorrectly approved the project, after failing to consider its impact on foreign greenhouse gas emissions and disregarding alternative development plans.
What they're saying: Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy (R), whose state joined in the lawsuit to defend the permits, issued a statement calling the ruling "a horrible decision."
- "The Willow project would power America with 160,000 barrels a day, provide 1000s of family-supporting jobs, and greatly benefit the people of Alaska," he said.
- The Department of the Interior declined to comment on the matter.