txt

CSSJR 13(RES): Supporting oil and gas exploration and development on the outer continental shelf offshore of the state; opposing attempts to prohibit future oil and gas development in the Beaufort and the Chukchi Seas, including the Hanna Shoal area; and requesting that the federal Administration cease and desist from restrictions that adversely affect active or future leases in high petroleum potential areas in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, including the Hanna Shoal area.

00                 CS FOR SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 13(RES)                                                              
01 Supporting oil and gas exploration and development on the outer continental shelf                                       
02 offshore of the state; opposing attempts to prohibit future oil and gas development in the                              
03 Beaufort and the Chukchi Seas, including the Hanna Shoal area; and requesting that the                                  
04 federal Administration cease and desist from restrictions that adversely affect active or                               
05 future leases in high petroleum potential areas in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas,                                       
06 including the Hanna Shoal area.                                                                                         
07 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA:                                                               
08       WHEREAS residents of the state, concerned with the economy of the state for this                                
09 generation and generations to come, vehemently oppose the action taken by President Barack                              
10 Obama on January 27, 2015, under the alleged authority of 43 U.S.C. 1341(a) (sec. 12(a) of                              
11 the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act), to withdraw significant oil-rich portions of the                                
12 Beaufort Sea Planning Area and the Chukchi Sea Planning Area from consideration for any                                 
13 future oil or gas leasing for purposes of exploration, development, or production; and                                  
14       WHEREAS, while portions of the Beaufort Sea Planning Area and the Chukchi Sea                                   
01 Planning Area were deferred in previous lease sales, the new plan would block new leases in                             
02 high petroleum potential areas, including the Hanna Shoal area; and                                                     
03       WHEREAS the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, created on August 7, 1953,                                       
04 defined the outer continental shelf as the submerged land lying seaward of state coastal                                
05 waters, which is three miles offshore, that is under United States jurisdiction; and                                    
06       WHEREAS, under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, the United States                                         
07 Secretary of the Interior is responsible for the administration of mineral exploration and                              
08 development of the outer continental shelf; and                                                                         
09       WHEREAS, under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, the United States                                         
10 Secretary of the Interior may grant leases to the highest qualified responsible bidder based on                         
11 sealed competitive bids and adopt regulations as necessary to carry out the provisions of the                           
12 Act; and                                                                                                                
13       WHEREAS meeting national energy needs was a primary purpose of the Outer                                        
14 Continental Shelf Lands Act Amendments of 1978 (P.L. 95-372); and                                                       
15       WHEREAS the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act Amendments of 1978 established                                    
16 criteria for the outer continental shelf leasing program and required the United States                                 
17 Secretary of the Interior to formulate an outer continental shelf leasing program that would                            
18 "best meet national energy needs for the five-year period following its approval or                                     
19 reapproval"; and                                                                                                        
20       WHEREAS the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, United States Department of                                      
21 the Interior, is responsible for managing oil and gas resources on the outer continental shelf                          
22 and developing a five-year schedule of lease sales; and                                                                 
23       WHEREAS the 2017-2022 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Draft                                         
24 Proposed Program issued by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is the first in a series                               
25 of three proposals in the staged development process of the program; and                                                
26       WHEREAS the Alaska Region is the largest region of the outer continental shelf and                              
27 covers over 1,035,000,000 acres, including offshore areas such as the Beaufort Sea, the                                 
28 Chukchi Sea, Cook Inlet, and the Gulf of Alaska; and                                                                    
29       WHEREAS the Alaska Region of the outer continental shelf consists of 15 planning                                
30 areas; and                                                                                                              
31       WHEREAS sales have been held in eight of the planning areas over the years, the                                 
01 most recent of which was held in 2008; and                                                                              
02       WHEREAS there are existing federal leases in two planning areas, the Beaufort Sea                               
03 and the Chukchi Sea, and both planning areas can be developed in an environmentally                                     
04 responsible manner; and                                                                                                 
05       WHEREAS the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas are two outer continental shelf areas that                                
06 have the potential to provide oil to extend the operation of the Trans Alaska Pipeline System                           
07 for the benefit of all resident workers; and                                                                            
08       WHEREAS, in public comments on the 2012-2017 program, the state and others                                      
09 stated that extending operations of the Trans Alaska Pipeline System is a priority; and                                 
10       WHEREAS the Trans Alaska Pipeline System is currently operating at approximately                                
11 one-quarter of its capacity, and the continued operations of the system depend on new                                   
12 discoveries; and                                                                                                        
13       WHEREAS, in the Chukchi Sea Planning Area, Sale 193, the most recent sale in this                               
14 area, was held in February 2008 and generated more than $2,600,000,000 in revenue; and                                  
15       WHEREAS there are 460 existing leases in the Chukchi Sea Planning Area, all issued                              
16 in Sale 193; and                                                                                                        
17       WHEREAS the 2012-2017 program scheduled one sale in the Chukchi Sea Planning                                    
18 Area for 2016; and                                                                                                      
19       WHEREAS the Chukchi Sea Planning Area has the greatest potential to provide the                                 
20 hydrocarbons necessary to extend the operations of the Trans Alaska Pipeline System and                                 
21 provide the volumes of gas needed to make construction of a North Slope natural gas pipeline                            
22 economically viable; and                                                                                                
23       WHEREAS the state continues to express its support of oil and gas activity on the                               
24 outer continental shelf offshore of the state; and                                                                      
25       WHEREAS the state has expressed a preference for more lease sales on an area-wide                               
26 basis, rather than by targeted leasing;                                                                                 
27       BE IT RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature continues to support oil and gas                               
28 exploration and development on the outer continental shelf offshore of the state; and be it                             
29       FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature vehemently opposes any                                       
30 attempt by the federal Administration to prohibit the future option for oil and gas                                     
31 development in oil-rich portions of the Beaufort Sea Planning Area and the Chukchi Sea                                  
01 Planning Area, including the Hanna Shoal area; and be it                                                                
02       FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature requests that the federal                                    
03 government cease and desist from restrictions that adversely affect active or future oil leases                         
04 in oil-rich portions of the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, including the Hanna Shoal area.                                  
05       COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Barack Obama, President of                             
06 the United States; the Honorable Joseph R. Biden, Jr., Vice-President of the United States and                          
07 President of the U.S. Senate; the Honorable John Boehner, Speaker of the U.S. House of                                  
08 Representatives; the Honorable Nancy Pelosi, Minority Leader of the U.S. House of                                       
09 Representatives; the Honorable Mitch McConnell, Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate; the                                 
10 Honorable Harry Reid, Minority Leader of the U.S. Senate; the Honorable Eric H. Holder, Jr.,                            
11 Attorney General of the United States; the Honorable Sally Jewell, United States Secretary of                           
12 the Interior; the Honorable Hilary Tompkins, Solicitor, U.S. Department of the Interior; the                            
13 Honorable Daniel M. Ashe, Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Robert Dreher,                                
14 Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division; and                               
15 the Honorable Lisa Murkowski and the Honorable Dan Sullivan, U.S. Senators, and the                                     
16 Honorable Don Young, U.S. Representative, members of the Alaska delegation in Congress.