KTOO – The Trump administration is taking a first step towards potentially opening up new parts of Alaska to oil drilling.
The Bureau of Land Management announced Monday that it will consider allowing oil development in parts of the National Petroleum Reserve on Alaska’s North Slope that are currently protected.
The National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A) is an Indiana-sized chunk of federal land west of Prudhoe Bay. The BLM is asking for input on what parts of the Reserve should be available for drilling, including areas that were blocked off from oil and gas leasing under the Obama administration.
BLM spokesperson Lesli Ellis-Wouters said the announcement is a direct result of an order signed by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke when he visited Alaska this spring. It ordered the agency to review the existing plan.
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