Open Letter Campaigns
Arctic Wildlife Scientists Oppose Arctic Refuge Drilling
November 9, 2017
Letter to Senator Lisa Murkowski and Senator Maria Cantwell
Based on our experience in the Arctic, we oppose oil exploration, development and production in the Arctic Refuge. Such activity would be incompatible with the purposes for which the refuge was established, including “to conserve fish and wildlife populations and habitats in their natural diversity.” […]
Decades of biological study and scientific research within the Arctic Refuge have confirmed that the coastal plain specifically is vital to the biological diversity of the entire refuge. Within the narrow (15-40 miles) coastal plain, there is a unique compression of habitats which concentrates a wide array of wildlife native to the Arctic, including polar bears, grizzly bears, wolves, wolverines, caribou, muskoxen, Dolly Varden char, Arctic grayling, and many species of migratory birds. In fact, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Arctic Refuge coastal plain contains the greatest wildlife diversity of any protected area above the Arctic Circle.
Read the full letter with 37 signatories on the National Audubon Society website.
Scholars for the Arctic Refuge
November 29, 2017
Open Letter to the Members of the United States Congress
Drilling in the Arctic is risky—the inevitable and chronic spills of oil and other toxic substances onto the fragile tundra would scar this land and disrupt its wildlife. The pollution caused by the sprawling infrastructure of oil development would threaten wildlife populations and harm indigenous communities that rely on the biotic life. Moreover, as the effects of climate change become more apparent, and as the global community continues to move away from fossil fuels toward renewable energy, why would we now destroy the crown jewel of our National Wildlife Refuge System?
The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge must not be auctioned off to Big Oil. Its natural values far exceed any oil that may lie beneath the coastal plain. As scholars from across the United States and Canada, we ask that you keep this cherished place and vibrant ecosystem protected for generations to come.
Read the full letter with nearly 300 signatories on the Alaska Wilderness League website.