Stauber Leads Legislation to Restore Alaskan Energy Production on the North Slope
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congressman Pete Stauber (MN-08), Chairman of the House Natural Resources Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee, led his House colleagues Mary Peltola (AK at-large), Kevin Hern (OK-01), and August Pfluger (TX-11) in introducing the bipartisan Alaska’s Right to Produce Act of 2023. This legislation will reverse the Biden Department of the Interior (DOI)’s decision to prohibit oil and gas development on 13 million acres within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A). It will also reinstate the lawfully awarded leases that the Biden DOI cancelled within the non-wilderness Coastal Plain of the Artic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).
Of this legislation, Congressman Pete Stauber stated, “Alaska has been blessed with vast deposits of oil and natural gas that can unleash economic prosperity, which is why the responsible development of these resources is widely supported by inhabitants of the state, Alaska Native communities, and their entire Congressional delegation. Biden’s decision to take these resources offline not only ignores the needs of Alaskans, particularly the Alaska Natives that live and work on the North Slope, it also ignores our nation’s energy and security needs. It makes no sense to deny Alaskans the right to safely produce these resources and instead continue our dependence on hostile foreign nations, so I am proud to lead the introduction of this legislation to help restore oil and gas leasing and production on the North Slope. As the Chairman of the Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee, I will continue to fight until our friends in Alaska, and the entire nation, can benefit from this abundance of natural resources.”
Congresswoman Mary Peltola stated, “I am deeply frustrated by the Administration’s recent actions restricting energy development on Alaska’s North Slope, including the National Petroleum Reserve. These actions are strongly opposed by the Inupiat North Slope communities of the region. I will continue to advocate for them and for Alaska’s ability to explore and develop our natural resources, from the critical minerals we need for our clean energy transition to the domestic oil and gas we need to get us there. This bill is an important step in protecting Alaska’s leasing ability, including limiting the ability of courts to continuously reset the process. I will continue to advocate for permitting reform to make sure we have predictable timelines and a stable jurisdiction for developing our resources.”
Republican Study Committee Chairman Kevin Hern stated, “President Biden has been determined to destroy domestic energy production since Day One of his presidency, and Americans feel the painful effects of his policies every day. Energy security is national security, and our economy and security are stronger when we develop the resources we have at home. This legislation reverses the Biden Administration’s illegal actions in the Coastal Plain and will help us get back to a position of strength.”
House Energy Action Team (HEAT) Chairman August Pfluger stated, “Energy security is national security. President Biden’s decision to block American energy producers from utilizing nearly 40% of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is a continuation of his war on fossil fuels. Not only will this decision destroy the livelihoods of thousands of energy workers, but it will drive up costs for all Americans. I’m proud to work with Congressman Stauber on this legislation to restore drilling in Alaska’s North Slope and recognize the national security importance of affordable, reliable, American-made energy.”
House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Bruce Westerman stated, “At every turn, the Biden administration has waged war on domestic energy production and punished struggling American families who can hardly afford to keep the lights on and fill up their tanks. Earlier this year, Biden made the reckless decision to cancel Congressionally mandated energy production in Alaska while simultaneously locking up millions of acres in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, actions that directly put our national security at risk. These sweeping decisions were made without input from local and indigenous communities who widely support and rely on the responsible development of these resources. Today, Congressman Stauber is introducing much needed legislation to overturn these disastrous decisions and support the responsible development of our domestic energy resources and American jobs rather than relying on foreign production from our adversaries. He has been a champion for these issues as chairman of our Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee, and I thank him for his hard work defending American workers and American resources.”
Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), former President Trump established an oil and gas leasing program in ANWR. The TCJA restricted energy development in the Coastal Plain of ANWR to 2,000 acres and production could result in the development of 10.4 billion barrels of oil.
On September 6, 2023, the Biden Administration’s Department of the Interior announced plans to cancel all seven remaining oil and gas leases issued under the Trump Administration in ANWR while concurrently locking up 13 million of acres within the NPR-A from oil and gas production.