“The Trump administration on Thursday proposed to loosen Obama-era safety regulations for the oil industry in the Arctic Ocean off Alaska to ease the way for petroleum extraction in the region, an effort that President-elect Joe Biden will likely throw out once in office.
The proposal would revise a suite of Obama-era rules crafted to improve safety in the extreme conditions of the Arctic after a Shell drilling rig ran aground in the Gulf of Alaska in 2012. The company later abandoned oil exploration in the Arctic and there are no active drilling operations there.
Now, much of the U.S. portion of the Arctic Ocean – the Chukchi Sea and part of the Beaufort Sea – is off-limits to new oil and gas leasing under a 2019 judge’s order that overturned President Donald Trump’s effort to open vast areas of the Arctic and Atlantic oceans to oil leasing. Biden has also vowed to ban all new drilling in federal lands and waters once he takes office.”