The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)

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The nation has the opportunity to increase the production of natural gas, an energy source that is environmentally friendly. The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, “ANWR” for short, is a national wildlife refuge in northeastern Alaska. It consists of 19.6 million acres in the Alaska North Slope region. Nicholas Monaghan reports that the ANWR has been at the face of the environmental policy debate for over thirty years. Since the early 1970s, there has been an environmental battle between oil interests in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Those who seek to drill for oil and those who prohibit drilling. (649) The drilling is a confrontation between the United States economic needs versus the Arctic’s ecosystem’s needs. While most people say …show more content…
Those contradicting drilling, fear that if oil drilling occurs, it will cause “more roads, landing strips, and mechanisms for transporting oil back to the continental United States.” (Monaghan, 652) They also fear that the drilling will ruin the wilderness, as well as kill off the animal population in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Fortunately, many economic impacts can be eased with improved technology, such as slant-drilling, making it possible to “reach more reservoirs with fewer wells.” (Kotchen&Burger, 4725) In addition, Kotchen and Burger reported on the fact that some species of animals aren’t affected by human disruptions. There is an estimated amount 2,500 polar bears living in and around the ANWR. While oil development could impact their behavior, studies have shown that polar bear populations, located near drilling sites have grown over periods of “petroleum development” and are relatively unaffected by human disturbances. …show more content…
This extra money the United States would receive from lack of imported oil would allow for more improvements. Initially many people, including myself, find it absurd that anyone would want the US to start drilling. However, after reading the article written by economists, Kotchen and Burger, they made good points. There are enough tensions already with the United States and the Middle East. They don’t have our best interests in mind, so we need to think about ourselves and how we can better our country without help. With drilling in Alaska, it would allow us to break away from Middle Eastern countries, possibly reducing terrorism. Drilling would also help the economy. The United States depends on oil tremendously, using up 25% on the world’s oil. If we produced it here in the US, it would cut excess costs of transportation and it would help finically support struggling families. While many activists are worried about the life of the animals living in the refuge, for example polar bears show not to be affected by human disturbances. Along with new technology advancements, the risk of drilling causing spills wouldn’t be as much of a

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