Although 95% of the North Coast of Alaska is already open to drilling, the last 5% is now at risk of being developed for oil and gas exploration. This wild land is traditional Native ground and home to important wildlife like polar bears and caribou. Oil and gas exploration would put these cultures and species at unnecessary risk.
The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is home to hundreds of species of plants, birds, mammals, and fish. This wild landscape bursts with color and sound throughout the year. While the rivers and ice fields of the Arctic Refuge may be remote, they have a direct connection to every American through the travels of migratory birds and caribou.
The Gwich’in and Iñupiat peoples of the Arctic have lived in the remote region of the Arctic Refuge for countless generations. They protect and celebrate the land, wildlife, and history of this landscape. They are important members of global society, and speak out for the protection of the land.
The Arctic Refuge is covered in ice and snow for much of the year, but when the snow melts in the spring life explodes. The long summer days allow plants to grow quickly, supporting a complex food chain. Changing climates are breaking this cycle, and energy exploration could damage it further.
Protecting the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge has been a bipartisan effort throughout its history. However, the coastal plain of the Arctic Refuge remains unprotected. Recent political events have opened this region up to the threat of oil and gas development.