Ice National Wildlife Refuge ANWR - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Ice National Wildlife Refuge ANWR

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Ice National Wildlife Refuge ANWR

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  1. Arctic National Wildlife Refuge(ANWR) • ANWR is a 19 million acre area located in the northeast corner of Alaska • It is the largest unit in the National Wildlife Refuge System • This area is the only area in which petroleum development is prohibited by Congress

  2. Photo credit: Mountain High Maps, Christopher G. Reuther/EHP

  3. Background • Early explorers saw ANWR’s potential for petroleum – they found oil seep and oil-stained sands • Since then exploration has been restricted

  4. How much oil is there? • USGS – between 5.7 and 16.0 billion barrels of reserves in ANWR (95% and 5% confidence levels), with a mean of 10.3 billion barrels • But…the price of oil determines how much of this oil is deemed profitable to drill!

  5. So how much will be retrieved? • USGS estimates state that approximately 3.2 billion of this oil can be recovered at an oil price of $20/barrel…but if the price of oil drops to $15/barrel or below, NONE of the ANWR reserves will be economically recoverable.

  6. ANWR Production • The ANWR area could be produced at around 1.1 million barrels/day (similar to the North Slope), which would deplete mean technically recoverable oil reserves in about 25.7 years. However, oil prices may dictate that the reserve may last far less.

  7. ANWR Production • The ANWR area could be produced at around 1.1 million barrels/day (similar to the North Slope), which would deplete mean technically recoverable oil reserves in about 25.7 years. However, oil prices may dictate that the reserve may last far less.

  8. In Perspective • Production of ANWR oil fields will account for only 10.6% of the average U.S. daily import of oil. • ANWR production at 1.1 million barrels per day constitutes only 5.6% of the average U.S. daily consumption of oil.

  9. Infrastructure Problems • Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation - average of 400 spills (1995 to 2001) from North Slope industry operations, totaling nearly 1.5 million gallons of diesel, crude, and hydraulic oil, as well as other substances. • General Accounting Office (5/15/00) - the number of pipeline accidents increased by 4% annually between 1989 and 1998, killing 226 people.

  10. Consequences of Oil Development • Blocking or disturbing the wildlife • Loss of hunting opportunities • Increased number of arctic fox, gulls, and ravens on nesting birds due to garbage becoming a food source • Altering of vegetation due to change in drainage patterns and spreading of alkaline dust • Possible contamination of water and land from oil spills

  11. Wildlife Endangerment • Caribou • The preferred food is located in the ANWR area • For successful reproduction, female caribou need to move freely in the area to find resources to build up their fat reserves and milk • The herd will be exposed to higher predation • Will change the migratory pattern

  12. Wildlife Endagerment • Polar Bear • Female polar bears who are going to give birth build dens in the winter • Approximately 42% of the dens are built in the ANWR area • Noise such as humans and vibrations could cause the polar bears to leave their dens prematurely, causing death to the cubs and possible human-bear conflicts

  13. Example of the North Slope • Drilling in the North Slope oil fields have not been deadly or even very harmful to wildlife • Polar bears-good • Caribou herd numbers have actually increased

  14. Reasons to Drill • Only 8% of ANWR would be considered for exploration (1.5 million acre) • Increased job opportunities • Anywhere else to drill? • Decrease the nation’s dependence on foreign oil (US imports over 55% of our nation’s oil need) • The North Slope oil fields that produce 25% of our domestic oil production has been declining