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Inupiat Leader from North Slope Criticizes Biden Administration’s Opposition towards Oil and Gas Industry in Alaska

A representative from the North Slope Inupiat tribe testified that the Biden administration’s decision to cancel oil and gas leases in Alaska will have negative consequences for tribal communities. In contrast, an Interior Department official and the leader of an Alaska Native group offered different perspectives during congressional hearings. The Department of the Interior recently canceled seven leases for drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and proposed a rule to restrict oil and gas development in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. The Deputy Director of Operations for the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management, Michael Nedd, stated that the goal was to manage these areas in a way that benefits future generations. However, Nagruk Harcharek, the president of the Voice of the Arctic Inupiat, expressed concerns about the impact of these decisions on his community, emphasizing the importance of responsible resource development for the North Slope Borough.

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