Green Group Ad Buy Touts Biden’s Anti ANWR Policies To Young Voters.

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Today’s Key Takeaways:  Southcentral Alaska’s energy future? New Zealand reversing oil and gas ban to bolster energy security. $2.6 million digital ad buy promoting Biden’s anti-Arctic policies to young voters.


EDITORIAL: Alarm bells sounding for Southcentral Alaska’s energy future
Editorial Board, Anchorage Daily News, June 8, 2024

When it comes to crises in Alaska, residents have an unsettling tendency to tune out until the only options left are bad. In part, this is learned behavior: Sometimes the state is bailed out by its resource wealth (as has happened with budget snafus and rollercoaster oil prices) or world events (such as the advent of World War II bringing a tremendous infrastructure boom). When this happens, Alaskans take away the lesson that they may as well not bother acting to forestall a catastrophe, placing their trust in outside forces to swoop in and save us from disaster. But this is dangerous, shortsighted thinking, and there’s no guarantee we’ll escape the worst-case scenario. The most recent example came late last month, when natural gas utility Enstar asked the state to approve a minor territorial expansion that would allow for the construction of a short pipeline — one that would allow Enstar to transport imported natural gas.

The notion of importing gas to a state with tremendous proven reserves of the resource is anathema to many Alaskans, who can’t fathom why it doesn’t make more sense to develop the gas within the state’s borders. But the appetite of producers to explore for more gas in Cook Inlet — and take on the associated financial risk — is meager. And the massive natural gas deposits on the North Slope are mostly stranded, with transportation costs (or construction costs for Alaska’s great white whale, a trans-Alaska natural gas pipeline) rendering their delivery uneconomic. As a result, the most cost-effective supply option for Enstar’s gas supply after its contract with Hilcorp expires in 2033 threatens to be imported gas.



New Zealand Set to Scrap Oil, Gas Exploration Ban in Second Half
Sunil Jagtiani, Bloomberg, Jiune 8, 2024

Government says reversing the ban will bolster energy security

Green Party labels the move a backward step for climate aims

New Zealand’s government is pressing ahead with plans to lift a ban on offshore petroleum exploration, citing energy security challenges from “rapidly” declining natural gas reserves.

Gas is “critical” for the economy during periods of peak electricity demand and when generation dips from more intermittent sources such as wind, solar and hydropower, Resources Minister Shane Jones said in a statement on Sunday.

Read more: New Zealand Third-Quarter Power Generation Used More Fossil Fuel

Prime Minister Christopher Luxon’s administration had pledged to resume offshore oil and gas prospecting following last October’s election. Officials are also trying to speed up the construction of renewable plants.



Green group ad buy pitches young voters on Biden record
Ben Geman, Axios, June 7, 2024

TheLeague of Conservation Voters is launching a $2.6 million digital ad buy that promotes President Biden’s Arctic anti-drilling efforts to young audiences.

Why it matters: Young voters were a key part of Biden’s 2020 coalition, but some progressives have expressed misgivings about key elements of Biden’s record — including approval of ConocoPhillips’ Willow oil project in Alaska, and the White House’s posture on Israel.

  • LCV points to polling that shows a lack of awareness about Biden’s climate efforts.
  • With the general election expected to be tight and hard-fought, the incumbent needs all the support he can get.

State of play: The ads out today appear in four swing states — Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — plus Delaware and D.C.

  • The 30-second spots touting Arctic protection are running as non-skippable ads on YouTube, as well as streaming platforms like Hulu and Amazon Prime.
  • In one ad called “Natural Wonders,” a narrator says, “oil and gas drilling would devastate this fragile habitat and its wildlife,” and thanks Biden for “historic protection.”

Catch up quick: LCV points to Biden’s April decision to protect 13 million acres of Alaskan arctic acres, including an outright ban on new oil and gas leases on 10.6 million acres.

  • “Not enough people know just how much President Biden has already done to stand up to Big Oil by taking action to lower costs and protect these special areas in the Arctic from oil and gas drilling,” Pete Maysmith, LCV’s senior VP of campaigns, in a statement.

The LCV spots are part of a much wider climate movement ad  push ahead of November’s election.

The other side: Industry groups and Republicans say Arctic development can be done safely.

Critics say Biden is closing off too much future production, and threatening U.S. energy security.

His new Arctic protections announced in April also drew a rebuke from Alaska Democratic Rep. Mary Peltola.

The bottom line: Energy is emerging as a major campaign battleground, with presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump vowing to unwind various Biden fossil fuel policies.