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The Artic National Wildlife Refuge (Anwr) Vs. Oil

2828 words - 11 pages

Imagine a place where wildlife and wilderness are triumphant; an immaculate frontier, preserving the life of all that inhabits it. There are extraordinary animals in the midst of their activities. You can see caribou, a type of deer, fording across a nearby river, the hairs of their fur keeping them warm and buoyant in the water (Smithsonian 1). The caribou traverse the river with a dignity found in animals that have not changed their habits for anyone or anything. This dignity exists because the place that they inhabit has been kept safe; they live as they were meant to live. These animals have experienced very little of the logging, pollution, over-hunting and other human related threats that torment most other beasts. The reason for this is because they inhabit a protected area deigned the Artic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska.The ANWR is one of the last places on earth where artic and sub artic land remains intact and is kept that way. It is located in the northeastern corner of Alaska, and is considered the ?crown jewel? of America?s National Wildlife Refuge System. The ANWR provides quarters for many species of wildlife including 130 types of migratory birds, two types of caribou ( porcupine and central artic), three types of bears (polar, grizzly and black bears), wolves, muskoxen, Dall sheep, arctic and red foxes, wolverines, so on and so forth (Defenders of Wildlife 2). It is free of all development, and you have fly, boat or use your own two legs to get there. The refuge has been kept safe and pristine for over 40 years because it is one of the last places on earth that hasn?t been meddled with. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says, ?The Refuge is valued, even by those who never travel within its borders, as a symbol of America's vast and remote wilderness - a place of inspiration and beauty - a promise for the future for all Americans?(United States, Fish and Wild Life Services 3). It represents one of America?s last frontiers; A place that America should be proud of and keep safe at all costs.Originally called the Artic National Wildlife Range, the ANWR was established in 1960 when President Dwight Eisenhower signed a Public Land Order to create it. Eisenhower expressed the sentiment to protect the areas,-?unique wildlife, wilderness, and recreational values? (2). Though the refuge started out as 8.9 million miles it gathered area over time through other presidents like Jimmy Carter in 1980 (who also changed the ?range? to ?refuge?) (2). It is now an estimated 19 million acres or roughly the size of South Dakota. Although Congress has protected most of the refuge, 1.5 million of those acres have been set aside for potential oil exploration. The area is designated by the numbers, ?1002? and is located along the coastal plain of the ANWR. For the last number of years, bills to open the refuge to oil exploration have been going through Congress, none of which have been successful as of yet. And in these energy costly times, the...

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