Alaska needs to exploit its vast natural resources, but do so in a way that heeds the growing threats of climate changes, the state’s lieutenant governor said.
President Barack Obama is in Alaska touting the dual agenda of taking the steps needed to slow the impacts of climate change while ensuring state revenue from the oil and gas industry remains durable. Obama’s plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions while at the same time signing off on arctic drilling permits for Royal Dutch Shell has earned both praise and condemnation.
Speaking at an Alaskan arctic conference in Anchorage, Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott said the state needs to exploit the oil and gas resources it has, but in a way that recognizes the industry’s impact on climate change.
“We need help to continue, yes in the waning days of the petroleum era, to make the transition from petroleum to a new world built upon renewable energy,” he said. “We need to develop Alaska’s resources, a need to do it in a way that recognizes the impact upon the arctic and the consequences of ill-devised action that would occur and impact climate change if we are not smart and we are not resilient.”