Interior Secretary Deb Haaland met with environmental and Indigenous groups opposing the Willow oil drilling project two weeks before the Biden administration approved it. The project would extract millions of barrels of oil from Alaska's National Petroleum Reserve.Her supporters convinced her to reject the massive ConocoPhillips drilling project. Haaland told her audience that the office had to make tough decisions, which upset them. Haaland did not say which way the department was leaning on the ruling. She choked up about it, which meeting sources interpreted as her disapproval of the idea."It was obvious physically how hard this position was for her," one source said.After months of internal deliberations, the Biden administration approved the massive oil drilling project on Monday.
espite strong opposition from the state's congressional delegation and environmental groups, which will now sue to stop it.Haaland called Willow a "difficult and complex issue that was inherited" from the Trump government, which cleared a larger version in 2020.
Inside the Biden administration's fraught decision to green-light the controversial Willow Project | CNN Politics