The Willow Project

The willow project was proposed by ConocoPhillips’ to start a huge oil drilling project on the north slope of Alaska in the National Petroleum Reserve which is owned by the federal government. The project would generate enough oil to release 9.2 million metric tons of planet-warming carbon pollution every year. This is equivalent to adding two million gas powered cars to the roads. It would extract 500 million barrels of petroleum and release annual emissions equivalent to 76 new coal fired power plants operating in a single year. This is really bad for the animals; the pollution would make thousands of animals homeless due to loss of habitat. This project would not only affect the animals, it would affect humans as well. All the pollution would double global warming and tear a hole in the O-zone layer, which would make a devastating heat on earth. 

Those who agree with the project (Alaska’s law makers) state that it will be good for creating jobs, boosting domestic energy production, and we wouldn’t have to rely on foreign oil companies. They met with the President on March 3rd doing their best to urge him into the project. Others who are for the project are groups of Alaskan Natives on the north slope. They say that it is an essential new source of revenue for them, and they could use the money to fund education and health care. 

There is another group of Alaskan Natives who disagree with the project. They do not like it because they live closer to the project and are extremely concerned about how it will affect the environment, and their own health. There have been many letters sent to the interior secretary Deb Haaland specifically from the Nuiqsut Natives. Stating that their village and towns would take the environment and health issues head on if it were to happen. The other villages surrounding the Nuiqsut agree with them, although they can see the partial benefits they also see that it will hurt the Nuiqsut very much, and they support them. There has also been online disagreement with the willow project. Especially this last week on tik tok which resulted in over one million letters sent to the Biden administration. Not only that, but it has also generated over 2.8 million signatures on the website’s petition to stop the willow project.