White House should deny Willow Project proposal


Rod Long via Unsplash

The Willow Project will create new oil drilling sites on the northern slope of Alaska.

Alex Whelchel, Staff Writer

Climate activists have begun rallying against President Joe Biden as he weighs the pros and cons of approving The Willow Project. Proposed by ConocoPhillips, the plan involves drilling on the northern slope of Alaska for oil.

Biden should not accept this plan and should continue funding projects to reduce the effects of climate change.

This plan aims to create upwards of 100,000 barrels of oil per day. Scientists have predicted that over its 30-year lifespan, about 278 million tons of greenhouse gases will be dumped into the atmosphere. These greenhouse gasses lock in radiation from the sun, warming the earth’s surface, and destroying the arctic. Their emissions will cause devastation to animals who call the arctic home.

Along with the havoc the drilling will cause the environment, this plan goes directly against Biden’s goal to reach 100% clean energy by 2035. After signing an executive order requiring federal agencies to have 100% free carbon pollution by 2030, it’s bizarre that he would even consider approving a plan like this. 

The company funding the project, ConocoPhillips, has claimed that it is responsibly developing this project and actively researching ways to lessen its impact. No matter how much they attempt to lower the impact on the environment, there is no way to completely eliminate dangerous emissions when drilling for oil. While they are the first to comply with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s new requirements to reduce volatile organic compounds and methane emissions, the threat remains.

 With a petition on Change.org racking up more than 3 million signatures to stop the Willow Project, and a hashtag, #StopWillow, trending across many social media sites, it’s clear that approving this project would be a mistake.

Biden should not go forward with the plan to drill for oil in Alaska in order to protect the environment and listen to the majority.