Map of Exploratory Wells in Chukchi Sea (c) Anchorage Daily News.
Map of Exploratory Wells in Chukchi Sea (c) Anchorage Daily News.

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar conditionally approved Shell Oil Company’s plan to drill three “exploratory, information-gathering” oil wells in the Chukchi Sea during the next open season, which will be from July-October 2010. There will be tough environmental restrictions on the exploratory drilling, yet these still aren’t enough to satisfy environmental watchdogs. The Anchorage Daily News has an in-depth story on the topic.

In a press release, he stated, “A key component of reducing our country’s dependence on foreign oil is the environmentally-responsible exploration and development of America’s renewable and conventional resources.” He continued, “By approving this Exploration Plan, we are taking a cautious but deliberate step toward developing additional information on the Chukchi Sea.”

Sarah Palin, as you could probably guess, was delighted with the announcement.

On her Facebook profile, she posted a message saying, “As an Alaskan and an American, I am very grateful for the decision today because it is a step in the right direction toward prosperity for Alaska and energy independence and security for America.”

Categories: Oil & Gas USA/Alaska

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