Arctic

Biden immediately slams brakes on oil drilling in Arctic refuge

President Joe Biden imposed a “temporary moratorium” on all oil and gas leasing activities in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge shortly after taking office on Wednesday, citing the “alleged legal deficiencies underlying the program” and the inadequacy of a required environmental review.

Arctic seals were listed as threatened in 2012. Now their sea ice habitat will be protected, too.

The Bering, Chukchi and Beaufort seas are home to a variety of marine mammals, including bearded seals and ringed seals. Though both species are in relative abundance, long-term projections forecast a threat to the once abundant sea ice that the seals live on. As a result, the species were listed as threatened in 2012 under the Endangered Species Act.

Arctic Refuge lease sale goes bust, with no bids from major oil companies

One of the Trump administration’s biggest energy initiatives suffered a stunning setback Wednesday, as a decades-long push to drill for oil in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge ended with a lease sale that attracted just three bidders — one of which was the state of Alaska itself.

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