Many folks are aware of and fighting to protect the Arctic Refuge, but relatively few have heard of the Western Arctic – even though public lands in the Western Arctic region are more expansive than the Refuge and contain habitat just as critical. That’s not an accident.
Despite being the United States’ largest swath (you heard that right) of public land, the federal government has tried to designate it as simply another oil patch – naming it the “National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.” To Trump and many in the federal government that’s all it is – they don’t see it as critical wilderness habitat, home to tens of millions of critters – they see it as an asset to be bought and sold at the behest of the oil industry.
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