Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Targeted for Drilling in Senate Budget

"The plan — tied into the Republican tax overhaul — assumes $1 billion in revenue, likely to come from oil leases in the pristine Alaska wilderness area."

"Congressional Republicans may have found the clearest path yet to opening up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling—by shielding their efforts from the Democrats.

The draft budget resolution issued by the Senate Budget Committee today ties two major initiatives—tax overhaul and opening up ANWR—to the 2018 budget. The resolution included instructions to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to submit legislation that would identify at least $1 billion in deficit savings. Those instructions are considered a thinly veiled suggestion that the committee find a way to open up part of the pristine Alaska wilderness area to oil and gas drilling.

The committee was instructed to submit the legislation under a special process—called reconciliation—that would allow it to pass with a simple majority, instead of requiring a two-thirds majority. This would allow it to pass without any votes from Democrats. The move is similar to what the House did when its budget was proposed in July."

Sabrina Shankman reports for InsideClimate News September 29, 2017.

Source: InsideClimate News, 10/02/2017