The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is located in the Northeastern part of Alaska and it is the largest wildlife refuge in the country. There is approximately 19,000,000 acres and is the home to 45 land and marine mammals and over 180 species of birds. It was established in 1964 to conserve wildlife populations and habitats and to ensure water quality inside the refuge.
Ever since the 1970’s there has been a debate in the United States on whether to drill for oil in the ANWR. The debate over drilling in this area relies on how much oil is available in the ANWR and the harm it could have on the wildlife. The supporters think it could drastically lower the price of oil and cause our economy boom. It could also create as much as 735,000 jobs, decrease dependence on foreign oil and it would only take place on 8% of the refuge. It is also been said by supporters that in the drilling process animals will not be harmed. Before the U.S. started drilling there were only 3000 caribou in the refuge and now there are 32,000. Alaska has over 75% percent of their people who are pro drilling which also includes some of the people living in the refuge. The people who disagree with drilling think it would have no impact on lowering gas prices and that it can disrupt wildlife because accidents do happen. When they do it will cost a fortune to pay for the damages and therefore hurting the economy even more. It also doesn’t resolve our energy needs because we still don’t have an alternative for gas. The government would also start taking money from the federal budget and peoples trust funds.
I believe that they should drill in the refuge because as of right now we still don’t have an alternative energy source. We wouldn’t have to depend on foreign oil therefore it would eliminate the billions of dollars being lost. In this economy it is hard for people to find a job and this would create thousands of jobs. Even if they do find oil they will only be allowed to explore 2000 acres of land. The ANWR has the potential to carry a large amount of petroleum that hasn’t been discovered in North America.