"ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has rejected a controversial land trade that would have allowed oil and gas drilling in part of a national wildlife refuge in Alaska.
The service said it had made a preliminary decision to reject a Bush administration proposal in the works since 2004 to trade out land in the Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge so that it could be explored for oil.
Opposition from residents of Native American villages near the proposed drill sites, new information on geologic resources and a closer look at climate-change impacts led to the unexpected shift against going through with the land trade, officials said."
Yereth Rosen reports for Reuters July 19, 2009.