Will the Biden administration prioritize the environment over big oil profits? Activists are currently ramping up efforts to block the Willow Project, a controversial oil drilling project in Alaska, citing its potential devastating impact on the climate. As the administration's decision looms, the fate of this project hangs in the balance.
The Willow Project is a multibillion dollar oil drilling project, proposed by ConocoPhillips, located over 23 acres of land in Alaska. This project will take a significant toll on the climate and it is a “step in reverse” according to the Sierra Club, one of the largest environmental organizations. It would pose a threat to all living things in the area, disturbing wildlife while also impacting the health of local communities.
The Biden administration predicts the project will emit over 9.2 metric tons of carbon emissions per year. For context, cars emit around 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually. While the Biden administration is considering reducing the number of drilling pads from three to two in order to appease climate advocates, the results would still be devastating.
Climate activists are not willing to let this project be approved without putting up a fight. The #StopWillow hashtag has gained momentum on various social platforms, amassing 50 million views solely on TikTok. Young generations are speaking out about their concerns about how their future will be at risk if projects like these get approved.
Amelia Estrada took to the popular online platform change.org to start a petition with the original objective of acquiring 500,000 signatures. Her determination and dedication did not go unnoticed as the petition gained an overwhelming response from people all around the world. As the petition picked up steam, more and more people joined in to support the cause, and the number of signatures skyrocketed. The petition has now surpassed this initial goal and has over 700,000 signatures. The response to Estrada's petition has been so immense that the goal is now set to reach a million signatures.
It remains to be seen whether the administration will prioritize the environment over big oil profits, but the passion and determination of climate activists continue to serve as a reminder of the importance of protecting our planet and future generations.