Bloomberg: Biden has decided to approve Willow, but was it a planned leak to kill it?

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If you want to kill a proposal in advance in Washington’s Beltway these days, you leak it to the media. It was done before the Supreme Court decision overturning the 1973 abortion ruling called Roe v. Wade last May, and it was done again on Friday, March 10, when unnamed sources leaked to Bloomberg News that a decision has been reached on Alaska’s Willow Project, which environmentalists have made into the new boogeyman.

In the case leaked on Roe v. Wade, the leak did not change the actual outcome of the ruling by the Supreme Court, however. It appears environmentalists may be hoping for a different outcome than the one Bloomberg is reporting.

Bloomberg writes, “The Biden administration has decided to authorize a mammoth ConocoPhillips oil project in northwest Alaska, rejecting arguments from environmental activists who insist it will push the world closer to climate catastrophe, according two people familiar with the matter.”

“After weeks of deliberations, senior advisers have signed off on the move, which represents one of the most momentous climate decisions yet for President Joe Biden. 

“The approval is set to be released next week by the Interior Department, said the people, who asked not to be named because an announcement has not been made. Under the draft plan, ConocoPhillips would be permitted to drill from three locations across its Willow site in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, unlocking an estimated 600 million barrels of oil as well as some 280 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions tied to burning it.”

It appears to be partially correct, in that the announcement is not being made this week, as many had hoped for. It would be economically life-changing for Alaska if the three drilling pads were approved, although other rumors say the Biden Administration will reduce the approval to two pads.

The news came out late in the afternoon on a Friday in Washington, D.C.

The project, while substantial for Alaska, is not massive, but could provide 188,000 barrels of oil a day into the Trans Alaska Pipeline System. ConocoPhillips would like to begin work this winter, but the days to actually do work in the Arctic are fewer now, as spring thaw will eventually take out the ice roads.

Sen. Dan Sullivan’s office declined to comment on the news report.

50 COMMENTS

  1. So then the only remaining question is how Conservatives will spin this approval in a manner to condemn President Biden. Surely they will find a way, and he will be excoriated here on MRAK once again.

    Or, a simple thank you might suffice…

    • “Make no mistake… I’m gonna raise some taxes”.

      That’s not the move of a lucid individual attempting to be re-elected. It’s the move of a man that’s recently figured out that a checkbook can hit a zero balance.

    • “Thank you”? For what? That oil is going down to Amerika to fuel all the electric car folks in Fantasy Land (until the Electric Car Guy bought their gripe app and angered them……now they want to burn gasoline again). And since the reserve is federal lands, the state only gets 10% of the royalty. The feds get 90%. Frankly, those people down there can ride bikes and rickshaws for all I care. I’m getting zip out of it, and that’s fine with me, but I certainly don’t need to thank anybody for it.

      • I think we use gas in Alaska as well. And we are getting a lot out of it. Those people down south are sick and tired of sending their tax dollars to support Alaska.

        • Yeah, we use about as much as the City of Long Beach, CA, whose population is larger than our entire state. Alaska been supplying the west coast with much of their oil for the past half century. And if they prefer to use their tax money to feed and tent half the Mayans from Central America over us, more power to them. Becoming free of their scrip would go a long way toward being free of them.

      • Well, there may be a few fundamentals that you don’t understand:

        1) I’m not quite sure how oil fuels electric cars, but whatever…
        2) Willow will provide jobs for many Alaskans, and help to keep ConocoPhillips from bailing out of Alaska like all of the other oil Majors.
        3) Adding oil to TAPS will help to keep it flowing longer, thereby allowing State-Royalty fields to continue producing.
        4) Many Alaskan businesses will sell goods and services to support the project.

        So I do think that a thank you is in order here.

        • It’s not a great deal. What about all the other rules, denials and anti-Alaskan decisions from the buffoon in the White House? Not thanking the liar for anything.

        • 1) Your EV’s are primarily made of plastics. I take it that you don’t know that OIL is the key ingredient in making plastic.

          Coal and Natural Gas are what is used to produce the electricity to charge your EV.

          Makes me wonder why the people in Washington state are so blind to simple common sense

          • “……..Coal and Natural Gas are what is used to produce the electricity to charge your EV……..”
            West of the Rockies, it’s hydroelectric dams produce 31% (just behind gas at 36%)……..but the Gaia worshippers are pulling all stops trying to kill that, too. The super drought of the past several years almost did it, too. The current shift of the jet stream saved the fools.
            Let them kill themselves off. Who needs them?

          • Not quite:

            The electrical energy generation mix in Washington is 64.6% hydroelectric, 14.4% natural gas, 7.8% nuclear, 2.9% coal, 8.7% wind, and 1.3% biomass which includes most refuse-derived fuel. Petroleum and utility-scale solar facilities generated most of the remaining 0.3%.

            So about 75% of my electricity comes from non-hydrocarbon sources. Please do your homework before chiming in.

          • This is a reply to Whidbey,

            You know Denali is right — EVs are made of lots of petroleum products. Also, as for your Washington State hydro bragging rights, you do know that you destroyed the prolific salmon runs on the mighty Columbia River so that you could get that hydro, right? And you do know that your Hanford Nuclear Power site “significant quantities of waste containing hazardous chemicals and radioactive materials. Some of these contaminants leaked into the land and water, including into the Columbia River,” according to NOAA. Do your homework before you chime in, Dog.

          • Oh I will on a jack wagon from Washington state, whom trolls an alaskan news site’s comment section. Those numbers are for the lower 48’s power grid. Your beloved green energy, you know wind farms and solar farms, cannot exist without a coal or nat gas power plant idling for their lack of production. Don’t believe me go watch planet of the humans.
            Also most of those listed sources require…. wait for it… oil. Moving parts require lubrication. Solar panels are plastic, again made from oil. Talk about a need to do some home work.

          • Replying to Bullwinkle:

            FYI, the nuclear waste stored at Hanford, which is now creating huge problems, was the byproduct of Plutonium manufacturing used for nuclear weapons. Hanford was built as a part of the Manhattan Project, which created the nuclear bomb used at Hiroshima. Production plutonium continued for many years thereafter, and resulted in huge waste stockpiles. Cleanup activities have been ongoing for decades, and a new vitrification plant is now in operation which will solidify the radioactive components of the waste for safe long-term storage.

            It’s not me who needs to do his homework.

          • Replying to Denali:

            1) The numbers I posted are for Washington State. It is incorrect to state that they are for the US. Overall, the US still gets about 60% of its electricity from fossil fuel, and only about 6% from hydro. Please refer to the US Energy Information website (I know they are a Government agency, but yes, they deal in facts, and you can trust them. You do still believe in facts in Alaska, don’t you?).
            2) I’m not anti-oil, yet you argue with me as if I am. I made my living producing the stuff. The only reason you’re arguing with me is because I support Biden, you hate him, and I’m asking the People of Alaska to thank him for approving Willow. That’s it.
            3) You should give grammarly.com a try. It will help you improve your writing clarity – including sentence structure, punctuation, word choice, grammar, and readability.

        • 1) It doesn’t. Oil doesn’t produce electricity on scale, either.
          2) True about ConocoPhillips, but just like Sohio, BP, and others in Alaska oil history, somebody new just buys in. I don’t care which corporation owns it. And the oil workers? The Alaskan workers are already there. It might bring new Alaskans here, but that doesn’t help me, either. And many oil field workers aren’t even Alaskan. They fly in through Anchorage or Fairbanks to Prudhoe, then after their two or three week shift, fly back to their families and homes in the Lower 48. They pay no state income tax or sales tax. That doesn’t help me either.
          3) True, but I remember pre-pipeline Alaska, and I miss it terribly. Oil can disappear like gold did, and I’d be quite happy.
          4) I don’t own a business servicing the oil fields, and the meager state taxes such businesses pay does me little good.
          You can thank the Biden Administration all you wish. I feel no need or desire to do so, nor do I feel a need to supply the west coast with oil. Let them refine sunlight and ride that to Heaven.

    • Thank you, for what? This was an already approved plan by the previous administration.

      Why don’t you worry more about Seattle’s homeless problem rather than Alaska.

    • Nope. I, as a conservative, have no problem giving credit to BIden for this. The question is, how liberals will to spin it to excuse this betrayal to their cause.

  2. I’m genuinely surprised. Biden must be concerned about getting re-elected.

    Now let’s see if it survives the 100 million lawsuits coming next.

  3. I’ll believe it’s approved as an economically feasible project when I see it

    There too much bs flying around these days to take anything at face value

  4. Willow could cost Alaskans their dividend. Why? Willow is on federal land, not state land. Credits can be used against oil produced from state lands- like Prudhoe Bay from the Willow project. The credits could cost Alaskans billions of dollars.

    There is no reason we should allow this kind of corporate welfare. Already a typical Alaska family has lost over $20,000.00- in lower dividends due to SB-21.

    • Oops – apparently we caught you reading Dermot Cole’s blog. We won’t tell anyone else…

      • Dermot the Frog is smart enough to remember the 90-10 split basics? Too bad most Alaskans don’t have a clue. Maybe if the media was a bit more honest about things folks might claw a clue out of the Alaskan Oil Games.
        But at least most Alaskans understand the reality of needing fuel. A large and growing percentage of west coast Amerikans don’t possess that basic truth. Let them learn it the hard way……..like the Germans are today.

    • M, I didn’t know that about the credits. Everyone should know that. We already give away the oil much cheaper than anywhere else in the world, then we have to fight over the scraps to get a partial dividend. As for corporate welfare, it costs us over $400 billion each year. That’s why big corporations, such as GE and Verizon, often pay $0 corporate income tax, according to many sources I have read.

  5. Thank you to our Congressional delegation, many in the Native Corporations, and the perseverance of ConocoPhillips. Elections matter. Dan, Lisa, and Mary coalesced together and made it happen. Rank choice voting promotes Alaskan common sense candidates rather than ideological challenged party lightweights. The approval of the Willow Project by environmentalist Democratic President is a remarkable feat for our delegation. Thank you.

    • If I could thank Trump for the Covid vaccines, which I did, the Conservatives on this site should be able to thank Biden for Willow. But many here just won’t be able to get those words out of their mouths, because their minds have been poisoned by too much Fox.

      • You spelled CNN wrong…again you’re getting your news media mixed up! The communists 3…Dan, Lisa, and Mary have everyone fooled!

      • Nope. I, as a conservative, have no problem giving credit to Biden for making a correct decision.

    • What a crock, this was politically motivated and we don’t quite know the reason why. What’s even more comical is that the green energy cultists will cry climate change while we have a giant volcano about to blow.

    • Our delegation had nothing to do with it as evidenced by ANWR gas politics since the late 1970’s. This fall off the fence on the production side most likely is the result of the coming world war and renewal of Saudi-Iranian diplomatic relations.

  6. Any venture needs an economy of scale to create enough return on investment to justify the risk. Approving it with the proviso of eliminating 33% of the drill rigs is the same as saying no. By the way, we need more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere; it is boosting the natural reforestation of the world.

  7. CP has already stated they need three drill sites, if Biden approves only two it is the same as killing the project based on what CP has said. CP could go for two and submit an amended permit in the future, but what if the Dem’s are not voted out

    • “what if the Dem’s are not voted out”
      Ultimately, if Willow is approved, it is about getting Democrats elected or re-elected. If Willow is denied then it is obvious that the anti-American, anti-clean development, anti-progress, anti-capitalist wing of the Democrat party is in charge and voters will need to remove them from any and every part of the decision making process in this country. If Biden approves Willow he does so knowing that the agenda of the left leads to nothing but ruin.

    • Yeah, and then Biden could give his usual lie that “We gave them permits, but they didn’t want to use them!”

  8. Praise the Lord if this is true!! Food on the table for many Alaskans and fuel in the tank for many Americans , a win/ win !!

  9. Now the White House is denying they’re going to approve Willow. Maybe someday, Whidbey, Biden will do something beneficial for the USA. But it’s looking like he’s going to kill Willow to appease environmentalist know-nothings.

  10. “…….So about 75% of my electricity comes from non-hydrocarbon sources. Please do your homework before chiming in.”
    Pay attention, Puppy; I wrote “west of the Rockies”, not your specific address in Washington……..although it has been clear that your world revolves around your keyboard. That’s sorta’ like the principle of most Alaskan oil being shipped to Wilmington, but you’re aware that it isn’t burned there, right? That’s where it’s refined. Remember when you Washingtonians shut off the electric switch to California in 2000-2001 during your drought? The rolling blackouts? The end of Grey Davis? Yeah, you guys are molded at the hip. Now imagine no more Alaska oil. Have you been sending Xmas cards to the Ayatollah every year? So yeah, again, you can (and should) thank Lunchbox Joe (or his puppeteer) profusely. Me? Not so much…………

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