Since the 1979 energy crisis, the question of whether to drill for ofshore oil in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge( ANWR ) has become a hot-button issue. Many ecologists, environmental groups, and Democrats have opposed it due to the possible threats to the natural wildlife.
So where is ANWR ?
The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is just east of Prudhoe Bay in Alaska’s “North Slope,” which is North America’s largest oil field. It consists of 19,049,236 acres (79,318 km²) in the Alaska North Slope region.
- Currently, the Prudhoe bay area accounts for 17% of U.S. domestic oil production. 1998 studies released by the US Geological Survey have estimated significant deposits of crude oil exist within the land designated as the “1002 area” of ANWR, as well.
- According to a report, by the Energy Information Administration, if Congress gave the go-ahead to pump oil from Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the crude could begin flowing by 2013 and reach a peak of 876,000 barrels a day by 2025.
- U.S. Geological Survey – 1980. In 1980, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated the Coastal Plain could contain up to 17 billion barrels of oil and 34 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.