Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR): Controversies for the 109th Congress [Updated December 16, 2005] [open pdf - 102KB]
"One major element of the energy debate is whether to approve energy development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in northeastern Alaska, and if so, under what conditions, or whether to continue to prohibit development to protect the area's biological recreational, and subsistence values. ANWR is rich in fauna, flora, and commercial oil potential. Its development has been debated for over 40 years, but sharp increases in gasoline and natural gas prices from late 2000 to early 2001, terrorist attacks, further increases in 2004-2005, and infrastructure damage from hurricanes have intensified the debate. Few onshore U.S. areas stir as much industry interest as the northern area of ANWR. At the same time, few areas are considered more worthy of protection in the eyes of conservation and some Native groups. Current law forbids energy leasing in the Refuge. The FY2006 Budget Resolution (H.Con.Res. 95, H.Rept. 109-62) required that the House Resources and Senate Energy Committees achieve savings targets that would be difficult without including ANWR legislation. On October 19, 2005, the Senate Committee reported its title for reconciliation (S. 1932) to the Senate Budget Committee. The Committee's title would open ANWR; supporters designed it to meet the savings target and Senate procedural restrictions on matters included in reconciliation bills."
CRS Issue Brief for Congress, IB10136
U.S. Department of State: http://fpc.state.gov/