Sullivan Responds to Joint U.S. – Canada Announcement

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK) today reacted to the joint announcement by President Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau on climate change and “Arctic leadership.” The announcement promises a host of new, legally suspect regulations on our country’s energy sector. The announcement would also subject the United States to a global initiative which could seriously undermine the opportunity for America to truly realize energy security, and would take “concrete steps” to lock up more of Alaska’s lands and waters. 

“Because we are the only Arctic state in the country, this release should have been called, ‘The Alaska-Canada Statement,’” said Senator Sullivan. “However, none of the members of Alaska’s federal delegation were even consulted or asked for input on this joint statement. More troubling, there was little, if any, meaningful consultation with those Alaskans who will be most affected by the initiatives outlined in the statement.

“Make no mistake, these initiatives will harm the energy sector, which provides low-cost energy and contributes to the quality of life for hundreds of millions of Americans. But it could be particularly devastating to Alaska at a time when the state is experiencing a budget crisis. If the initiatives are enacted, less oil and gas will be produced in our state, more jobs will be lost, and state coffers will be increasingly diminished. Now is the time when Alaska needs a federal government that will work with the state, instead of working against us to stymie economic opportunity.”

Details of the announcement include:

  • Promising that the U.S. will collaborate in managing the Arctic with Canada, including taking unspecified “concrete steps” to protect at least 17 percent of the region’s land and 10 percent of its water by 2020. 
  • Requiring that the U.S. government consult with Canada “if oil and gas development and exploration proceeds in the Arctic.”
  • Halting flaring at oil and gas sites by 2030.
  • Increased regulations on the oil and gas, auto and aviation industries.
  • Unspecified “new actions” to reduce emissions of hydrofluorocarbons.