‘Hell of a trade-off’: Why Biden bucked environmental lobby on Willow Project


President Joe Biden didn’t approve the ConocoPhillips Willow Project for the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska due to the pressure from Alaska’s delegation. It wasn’t the persuasive pressure from Sen. Lisa Murkowski or Rep. Mary Peltola. In remarks in Canada on Friday, he mentioned nothing about Alaska Natives going to Washington to lobby for or against the project, or the fact that the entire Alaska House of Representatives, which agrees on almost nothing, signed a resolution of support for the project.

Instead, he was advised by his lawyers that his administration would lose the subsequent lawsuit, if he denied the permit.

“My strong inclination was to disapprove of it across the board but the advice I got from counsel was that if that were the case, I may very well lose … that case in court to the oil company and then not be able to do what I really want to do beyond that,” Biden told reporters Friday during a news conference alongside Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who is a foe of the petroleum energy sector and free enterprise in general.

Biden then described his Willow decision as a “hell of a trade off” for the millions of acres of land that had been set aside generations ago for oil production in Alaska that he will now block.

In the approval of the Willow master development plan, ConocoPhillips will be allowed to construct up to three drill sites of the five it proposed. It will also be allowed to build the associated processing and support facilities, including gravel roads and pipelines to the Trans Alaska Pipeline System.

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland is so opposed to the project that she would not sign the record of decision, but passed it along to Deputy Secretary Tommy Beaudreau for the official signature.

Biden told reporters on Friday he’s taking millions of acres of the Beaufort Sea, closing off oil and gas drilling and blocking off the federal Arctic Ocean waters. It’s what one Biden official called a “firewall” to prevent any more leases in Alaska’s North Slope region, and it will be promulgated with new rules that affects half of the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska — some 13 million acres in all that will be taken by the federal government to prevent oil from being developed in the 23.5-million-acre petroleum reserve.

Biden has been trying to mend fences with the furious environmental lobby, which is one of his biggest supporters. Among actions he took subsequent to the Willow decision was the announcement about the millions that would be regulated into non production. Also, shortly after the Willow announcement, Secretary of Interior Deb Haaland also took back land the department had traded to a Native corporation in Alaska so that a road could be constructed between King Cove and Cold Bay’s all-weather airport.

“I am banking on, we’ll find out, that the oil company is going to say, not that’s not going to be challenged, and they’re going to go with with three sites. And the energy that’s going to be produced they’re estimated to account to 1% — 1% of the total production of oil in the world,” Biden told reporters, trying to downplay the importance of the decision.

“And so I thought it was a good — the better gamble and a hell of a trade-off to have the Arctic Ocean and the Bering Sea and so many other places, off limits forever now,” he said.


    • Right on MA!!! So far he doesn’t have any thing good to brag about. After all, I’ve heard a politician state that Americans are stupid and can’t remember anything any longer than what they had for their last meal.

    • He’s being rewarded w/ enhanced recognition shortly, isn’t he? I thought that’s what the investigation into his China ties, Hunter’s laptop, Hunter’s being wholly unqualified for anything outside of underaged incestuous relations and crack pipe shenanigans, being a recipient of payola, lying to the public about everything, etc. Particularly egregious was his recent lie about the importance of senior medical benefits as discussed in public but attempting to cut pay to med care providers by 4.5% for those same expenses. Oh yeah… then he suggests that any program to offset that cut wouldn’t be necessary as his trillion buck fix would cover the cut he had previously suggested. By that he meant that in a period of roughly 20% plus inflation his proposed 4.5% cut was adjusted to a 2..5% cut.

      The bummer part? Being imprisoned only works if you realize that you’re imprisoned. Maybe ankle monitor recognizance so he can soil his pants at home?

  1. the Democrat Party qualifies as a RICO case. It is a “Group” advocating Amti-American and for the demise of the Nation’s Constitutional establishment . I will never, never, never vote for a Democrat, RINO, or Identified as such, Independent. Period.

  2. Sweet. And Alaska’s own Governor with guidance of his AG and learned others is permitting an application for the federal government in contravention of tideland status by virtue of perpetuating a USFS perpetuity easement while having the audacity to deliver a state permit in President Biden’s precious waters of the United States themselves. Issuing a “permit’ over the waters of the United States for an easement given to the foreign corporation USFS registered in the City of London. I wonder who the owner of that corporation is. Is his name George? Does he wear crowns? President Jiden loves to be near the British Trudeau. I’m so happy at all the goodwill.

  3. Alaska has too much land. It and Peltola need to give it back to the feds and the brits. Why the Alaskan people in title will never miss it. Alaskan’s are not Ggung ho about the US Constitution anyways – are you.

    • Let’s see…
      Lisa Murkowski springs to mind.
      Oh… and Mark Begich.
      Let’s not forget Bill Walker, and if we can dip down to local politics, Ethan Berkowitz, Susan LeFrance, Chris Constant, well, pretty much the entire Anchorage Assembly now.
      At least Biden disguises his malice as incompetence. The people I named above did not even bother to pretend.

  4. Big winners in this mess are both China and Russia….as Biden continues to stab Alaska in and about its back and neck..

  5. The permitted back to the foreign USFS easement is in an annoyed lake ostensibly connected to the waters of the United States by “virtue” of ostensibly “draining” perhaps into the Turnagain Arm. Though connected the 25 acre lake drains toward Palmer to the north instead. This change in drainage is caused by the harm done ecologically by the Alaska Railroad Corporation, now on its own with lovely brochures claiming to go many times faster and heavier than ever thus shaking the mud down and enlarging the size of “the never to be named” lake, crushing the old “culverts and creating the huge lake reverting it back to the waters of the United States status though once conveyed to the people forever and was drivable at one time at low tide. Things of changed for the worse. So negligent, gentlemen. .

  6. He is giving us candy with one hand and stabbing us in the back with the other hand. Remember always look for the end game. We will lose every time. That’s true leadership Biden could care less about us taxpayers.

  7. Excellent. The sooner this happens, the better. I honestly can’t wait to witness people who voted for this idiot and his ilk to be hurt, mostly financially, beyond belief. If you think it’s expensive living in Alaska in today’s hyper-inflated economy, just wait till TAPS is mothballed.

  8. Golly. I wish we still had Don Young. HE would have sworn at a few bureaucrats for the jumble. He could have fixed thus up just like he brokered the Flawda causeway a few times also. And, President Trump would have gotten it how perverse these actions are. I wish he was back in office to put Alaskan Americans first per the US Constitution. :*(

  9. Let’s be honest here, SpongeBrain FullPants, a.k.a. The Potato, has no idea what the Willow Project is all about, and approved nothing that his handlers and puppetmasters did not tell him to. His undeniably decrepit mental capacity and obvious dementia make that a foregone conclusion.

  10. What is so hard to understand about “National Petroleum Reserve?” Wasn’t this established by Congress?

  11. There is no oil “off limits forever”, it will all be drilled and used. He just hates America, and Americans.

  12. Stupid, short-sighted, ignorant, leftist, feel-good, decision.

    It’s not in the best interests of neither Alaska nor the United States.
    If only obviously.

  13. Nothing more than bait and switch. He/They knew he as good to go to sign it, as well as there was an immediate lawsuit waiting in the wings. When will the lands alloted to the state be returned?

  14. Kind of a strange justification for Biden, since he usually goes ahead with policies he knows are illegal, harmful, and destructive and will lose in court eventually. Why did it stop him this time?

  15. Nothing in this discussion is forever. What one CCP-purchased shill can do with the stroke of a pen can be undone by the next shill. Pebble is gonna get dug. Drilling in the Arctic Ocean will be done (has been done for years at Endicott / Northstar. More will be done. ANWR and NPR-A will be operational.

    More interesting will be GTLs / CTLs off the Slope to replace volume as the Prudhoe Bay fields draw down. We can do this for a long, long time. There will even be a market for product. Cheers –

  16. A Hell of a trade… almost as good as me trading that bucket of dog crap I scooped off my driveway for the sitting President of these United States!

    I think I’d be on the losing end of this deal since unlike Joe Biden, frozen dog poop has some value, somewhere, for something. At least it can’t babble on and on and on and it won’t be taking bribe $ from the Chi- Coms.

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