Sierra Club Succeeds in Protecting Teshekpuk Lake from Big Oil
September 7, 2006
The Sierra Club and its allies are celebrating a court victory today that halts oil leasing in the Teshekpuk Lake region of the Western Arctic. The Lake Teshekpuk region provides unparalleled wildlife habitat, consisting of a network of coastal lagoons, deep-water lakes, wet sedge grass meadows, and river deltas. The Teshekpuk region is home to a 26,000-member caribou herd, and provides habitat for up to 60,000 molting geese each summer. Spectacled and Steller's eiders frequent the reserve, as does a large proportion of the world's Pacific brant population. The area was protected in 1998 when oil development moved farther and farther west of the Prudhoe Bay oil fields. That all changed June 23, 2003, when the Bush administration announced plans to open the remaining Teshekpuk Lake region to full scale oil development, removing any protections afforded the area just two years earlier. Sadly, yet predictably, the policy to drill came out of the recommendations of the Cheney Energy Task Force. The court's preliminary opinion today chastises the BLM for failing to disclose and assess the cumulative effects on wildlife of opening up vast areas in the Western Arctic to oil drilling, including the Teshekpuk lake region.
Read more about the fight to protect this natural resource on the Sierra Club Wild Lands Page:
Sierra Club Wild Lands Page
Details and Documents:
News Articles:Judge Keeps Oil Drillers from Alaskan Reserve
September 12, 2006 by Michelle Chen The New Standard
Court Ruling blocks Alaska oil lease sale
September 7, 2006 by Yereth Rosen The Washington Post
Court Blocks Drilling in Alaskan Wetlands
September 7, 2006Environmental News Service
See other "Promoting Resilient Habitats" cases.