Murkowski calls Kulluk grounding a ‘marine incident’

The anchor-handling vessel, the Aiviq, tows the drilling unit Kulluk to a safe harbor location in Kiliuda Bay, Alaska on Jan. 7, 2013. Photo by U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Jonathan Klingenberg.

The anchor-handling vessel, the Aiviq, tows the drilling unit Kulluk to a safe harbor location in Kiliuda Bay, Alaska on Jan. 7, 2013. Photo by U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Jonathan Klingenberg.

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski says in light of the Kulluk’s grounding, the government needs to look at all aspects of Shell’s Arctic drilling operations.

“It’s not just the drilling operation itself. It’s the whole initiative. You gotta move the assets up north and then back. All aspects of the operation need to be tended to,” Murkowski says.

Speaking on Talk of Alaska today, Senator Murkowski called the grounding a “marine incident.”

The oil and gas industry, and its supporters in Washington D.C., have labeled the grounding a transportation issue. But today, Senator Murkowski said it’s more than just that.

“I share the concerns of many, that all areas were not fully attended to, to a level of assuredness to us as Alaskans, to us as Americans,” Murkowski says.

Both the Department of Interior and the Coast Guard are conducting separate reviews. The Interior study is due out in a couple of weeks.