The Interior Department of President Joe Biden said that it would revoke the oil and gas leases that were signed in the last months of President Donald Trump's term.
According to Biden, he would take action to safeguard polar bears and caribou on about 19.6 million acres of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).
“As the climate crisis warms the Arctic more than twice as fast as the rest of the world, we have a responsibility to protect this treasured region for all ages,” Biden said in a written statement.
Just before Biden's inauguration, Trump granted the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA) seven leases. The action is a part of Biden's bigger plan to stop oil and gas exploration on public lands.
AIDEA stated that it will challenge the move.
“This latest action by the Department of the Interior shows arbitrary disregard for Federal law, based on campaign trail rhetoric. Campaign promises are not enough to justify this agency action,” AIDEA said in a statement.
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