The United States and Canada issued a joint statement banning oil and natural gas drilling in the majority of the Arctic’s Chukchi and Beaufort Seas. Canada also committed to banning all oil and natural gas licensing in the Canadian Arctic with a periodic review for reassessment. Both nations also committed to developing a strategy to phase down the use of heavy fuel oil (HFO) within the Arctic, and to proposing a related plan to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in 2017.
In response to the announcement, Danielle Grabiel, Senior Policy Analyst of EIA, issued the following statement:
“Announcement by the United States and Canada is a victory for the Arctic Ocean, as well as the people and wildlife that depend on it. This decisive action will be remembered as a cornerstone of President Obama’s environmental legacy, and as a foundation of Prime Minister Trudeau’s.”
“Placing the Arctic’s waters off limits to oil development, and phasing out the use of the dirtiest shipping fuel, charts a better future for iconic species like the beluga whale, and EIA is committed to defending this historic decision.”