Fourteen AGs Filed Amicus Brief Urging Halt of Arctic Refuge Lease Sale

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey led a coalition of 14 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in support of environmental groups seeking a preliminary injunction to halt the Trump administration’s “sudden rush” to sell leases and authorize seismic surveying for oil and gas development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The attorneys general warned that allowing the administration to proceed with its “rushed and reckless” leasing program “will forever alter the Coastal Plain, industrializing and polluting the delicate tundra ecosystem, altering water systems, and harming migratory birds and other wildlife,” which are “precisely the type of harms a preliminary injunction should stop” while pending challenges to the underlying environmental analysis proceed. The AGs emphasized that granting a preliminary injunction would “preserv[e] the environmental status quo in the crown jewel of our National Wildlife Refuge System” and “force [the Bureau of Land Management] to proceed at a pace that fully allows for public participation and careful agency deliberation consistent with the public interest.”