BING Definition of Colony: “country ruled by another: a country or area that is ruled by another country”. Alaska has 20% of America’s land mass and 3/4 of her coastline. Most of it is under federal government control. Alaska has most of America’s federally restricted lands. Less than 2% of Alaska is owned privately, other than by Alaska Native Regional Corporations. Yet, federal policies also impose restrictions on activity within state, private and Native lands. Most of America’s future domestic energy and strategic minerals could come from Alaska rather than from imports. Alaska’s Statehood Act and Constitution presuppose the state’s economic base will be natural resource production. More comment below. -dh
ADN by Lisa Demer. U.S. Sen. Mark Begich (NGP Photo) and a top Obama administration official sat down Tuesday with Cook Inlet gas and oil interests to discuss whether exploration and production could get a boost by streamlining requirements for protection of endangered Cook Inlet beluga whales. … Jane Lubchenco, administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, told the group that NOAA knows it must work with industry. … “The impacts on the industries are going to be profound, yet those industries did not lead to the decline,” Jason Brune (NGP Photo), formerly the executive director of the Resource Development Council … told Lubchenco. (Note: Our use of the term ‘colony’ in the headline today denotes the arrogant, arbitrary and capricious treatment Alaska is suffering at the hands of the Obama-Salazar-Enviroextremist Cabal. This treatment manifests itself in a continuing waterfall of new critical habitat designations, regulations and permit requirements that have, to date, resulted in not one positive move in support of sustainable economic development. Every federal action we have noted is negative to Alaska’s economy, to the national job and economic recovery effort. Below, we note BOEMRE’s news release dated August 18, inviting yet another round of comment on whether Interior Secretary Ken Salazar (NGP Photo) should affirm, modify or cancel Lease Sale 193, upon which may depend the survival of Alaska’s economic lifeline, the Trans Alaska oil pipeline. We hope this decision, and a number of similar federal regulatory/permitting decisions will enable a planned Arctic OCS drilling project to unfold next summer. If, after years of federal delay, the decisions do permit exploration, we shall make note of that important improvement in decision making affecting Alaska. We also include below another indication that the Cabal has his hungry eyes set on devouring the last vestige of non-wilderness land in ANWR: the 1002 area designated by Congress for oil and gas exploration and development. Yes, Alaska has been designated a sovereign ‘State’; but if it is being treated as a colony and its resources locked up against the will of its people, how can it possibly retain its economy and status as an independent state? -dh)
Analysis Addresses District Court Concerns, Public Comments
ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The Bureau of Ocean Energy, Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) today released a Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for the Chukchi Sea Oil and Gas Lease Sale 193, held in February 2008. The Final SEIS provides additional environmental analysis that supplements the review originally completed as part of the planning for Lease Sale 193. Specifically, the Final SEIS addresses concerns raised by the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska in its July 21, 2010, decision remanding Lease Sale 193 back to the agency, incorporates additional public comment, and includes a new analysis of the environmental impacts of a hypothetical Very Large Oil Spill (VLOS) scenario.
“We have worked diligently to address the District Court’s concerns in a thorough and comprehensive manner,” said BOEMRE Director Michael R. Bromwich. “This will ensure that decisions relating to this lease sale will be made in a careful, balanced manner using the best scientific information available.”
In 2008, Lease Sale 193 was challenged in court by a coalition of environmental groups and Alaska Native organizations. In July 2010, the District Court remanded the sale back to BOEMRE for further analysis under the National Environmental Policy Act. In its decision, the court stated that the bureau was not required to re-do the lease sale’s entire Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), but rather to address a specific set of concerns.
To address these concerns, the agency drafted a SEIS, which was released for public comment in October 2010. Following the opportunity for public comment, the agency prepared a revised version of the draft, which was released for public comment in May 2011.
The revised SEIS included an analysis of the potential environmental effects of a hypothetical VLOS scenario. A VLOS scenario is hypothetical, and is not an analysis of a well that any operator has actually proposed to drill. When an operator submits an Exploration Plan, that plan must specify the wells it proposes to drill and include an oil spill response plan that includes Worst Case Discharge values for these proposed wells. These values take into account specific depth, pressure, oil and anticipated reservoir properties for the proposed wells. These values may be lower than the hypothetical VLOS scenario used for the overall environmental analysis.
BOEMRE held public hearings in Alaska communities including Kotzebue, Point Hope, Point Lay, Wainwright, Barrow, Fairbanks and Anchorage; and conducted government-to-government consultations. Over 360,000 comment letters or cards were received from various entities: Alaska State and local governments; organizations; tribes; corporations; nongovernmental; industry; business and trade organizations; members of the Alaska State legislature; members of other state legislatures; federal agencies; and the public at large. After a rigorous review of these comments, BOEMRE updated the Final SEIS to reflect important stakeholder and public feedback.
In preparing the Final SEIS, BOEMRE’s analysis included a careful review of the U.S. Geological Survey’s June 2011 report, “An Evaluation of the Science Needs to Inform Decisions on Outer Continental Shelf Energy Development in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, Alaska.” Those data gaps addressed in the report that fall within the scope of the SEIS had also been previously identified and are currently being addressed by BOEMRE analysts. The report’s recommendations will help guide BOEMRE’s ongoing and future efforts to broaden and deepen the bureau’s scope of knowledge on the Arctic environment.
The Final SEIS is now available online at:
Copies are available on CD while supplies last. To request a copy, please submit a request to: BOEMRE Alaska OCS Region, 3801 Centerpoint Dr. Ste. 500, Anchorage, Alaska 99503-5820; or call (907) 334-5200 or (800) 764-2627.
The Federal Register notice announcing the Final SEIS will be published Aug. 26, 2011, at which time BOEMRE will begin accepting public comments. To comment, go to: http://www.boemre.gov/publiccomment.htm or send mail to:
Comments on the “Final SEIS, Chukchi Sea Lease Sale 193”
c/o Regional Director, BOEMRE Alaska OCS Region
3801 Centerpoint Drive Ste. 500
Anchorage AK 99503-5820.
Comments received on or before the deadline of Monday, Sept. 26, 2011, will be considered by the Secretary of the Interior in determining whether to affirm, modify or cancel Lease Sale 193. The final decision is due to the District Court no later than Oct. 3, 2011.