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Alaska: Court Cancels Offshore Drilling Plan

Source:  Copyright 2009, New York Times
Date:  April 18, 2009
Original URL: Status ONLINE

A federal appeals court ruled that the Bush administration did not properly study the environmental impact of expanding oil and gas drilling off the Alaska coast and canceled a program to find new reserves. A three-judge panel found that the Bush-era Interior Department failed to consider the effect on the environment and marine life before it began the process in 2005 to expand an oil and gas leasing program in the Beaufort, Bering and Chukchi Seas. It was not clear whether the decision applied to other areas of the same drilling program, including tracts in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Atlantic coast. The appeals court ordered the Interior Department, now run by Ken Salazar, to analyze the areas to determine environmental risks and potential damage before moving ahead with the program.

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