Will the Willow Project be approved and what consequences might we see?

seal resting on the iceberg, Seal - Animal, Animal, Mammal, Animal Wildlife, Beach, Harbor Seal, Tranquil Scene, Glacier, Ice Floe, Alaska - US State,
Image: © Ljubaphoto| Istock

U.S. President Joe Biden and his administration have advanced on a decision that could allegedly damage our climate beyond repair, but what is the Willow Project and how will it change the world around us?

The Biden Administration has been weighing its options concerning the potential approval of what is known as The Willow Project, located on the Alaskan North Slope. It appears the chances of its approval are on the rise.

Karlin Nageak Itchoak, Senior Regional Director at the non-profit Wilderness Society, has been fighting against the project, citing that “Willow is a carbon bomb that cannot be allowed to explode in the Arctic.”

With the Arctic already warming four times faster than the rest of the world, can we afford to prioritize economic growth over the planet?

What is the Willow Project?

The $8 Billion drilling project known as the Willow project is the proposal to create new oil fields on the Alaskan North Slope. Allegedly, by cultivating and undertaking the oil project, the U.S. Government can produce up to 180,000 barrels of oil a day, 1.5% of the total U.S. oil production.

Project builders ConocoPhillips Alaska have proposed five drilling sites following previous concerns about potential locations.

If approved, the project would represent the biggest U.S. oil field in decades.

Ongoing environmental concerns

Although the Willow Project has the potential to be extremely lucrative for the United States, evidence has shown that the project would produce the equivalent of more than 278 million tonnes (306 million short tonnes) of greenhouse gases over its 30-year life.

“278 million tonnes of greenhouse gases over 30 years”

This number is roughly equal to the combined emissions from two million passenger cars over the same time period.

Action Network and many others have been campaigning against the proposal, stating, “The Willow Project will be devastating for all those that call the Arctic home. The noise, traffic, and pollution the project brings will disrupt ecosystems that Indigenous Alaskans have relied on for millennia. And the project threatens the already vulnerable caribou population — a vital resource many native communities rely on.”

Trans-Alaska Pipeline System in Winter
Image: © Chingting Huang| Istock

Is there support for the Willow Project?

Widespread political support for the project can be found in Alaska, including politicians and state lawmakers.

Supporters have called the project “balanced” and say communities would benefit from taxes generated by it. They say these would be used to invest in infrastructure and provide public services in the area.

Is the president going back on his promises?

Activists have been calling out president Biden over the project, arguing that he is backtracking on his campaign statements and beliefs.

Since his election campaign, the 80-year-old president has publicly made fighting climate change a top priority. Having backed a landmark law to accelerate the expansion of clean energy such as wind and solar power and move the US away from the use of oil, coal and gas, many see this new potential oil project as a betrayal.

“Our Native villages are eroding into the sea, thawing permafrost is making infrastructure insecure, and food sources are disappearing,” Itchoak said. “And this project would just exacerbate and speed up the climate crisis in the Arctic.”

According to the Guardian, “it’s outrageous that Biden seems ready to greenlight the massively destructive Willow project, prioritizing oil industry profits over the future of polar bears and other Arctic wildlife,” said Kristen Monsell, senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “We’ll keep fighting it until it’s scrapped.”

Having promised to end federal oil and gas drilling, Biden has pushed towards renewable energy; however, as oil prices continued to rise due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the president has faced further pressure to increase drilling.

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      Stop destroying the planet for money you have already managed to get half of their housing to make your houses and cities don’t get the rest please!!

      • This is just wrong. If the willow project is happening we all gonna die. The ice will melt and the water will rise. We are destroying our HOME. STOP THIS

  1. Stop this I’m scared because I want to have a family and a good life, I am a child, it’s not normal a child be scared because a lot of dumb people want money and will destroy the earth

  2. O dinheiro não deveria valer mais que nosso planeta,isso que eles estão fazendo vai destruir o nosso planeta,parem com isso,isso é burrice, bando de sem noção. TENHAM EMPATIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Money shouldn’t be worth more than our planet, what they are doing is going to destroy our planet, stop it, that’s stupid, bunch of clueless. HAVE EMPATHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Pela mor de Deus,parem de destruir o planeta terra só por causa de dinheiro


    For the love of God, stop destroying planet earth just for money

  4. o dinheiro não é melhor que a nossa vida e a vida dos animais, nós merecemos uma vida tranquila e feliz nesse mundo, parem de ter olho grande em dinheiro e fazer de tudo pra ter ele, vocês são cruéis e sem coração, deixem os animais em paz, eles e nós não merecemos isso !! #stopthewillow


    Money is not better than our life and the lives of animals, we deserve a peaceful and happy life in this world, stop having a big eye on money and doing everything to have it, you are cruel and heartless, leave the animals in peace, they and we do not deserve this !! #stopthewillow

  5. We are seriously ruining the planet and countless lives because of something that is cut from trees that now controls our life, I’m a child and I used to only worry about things like quicksand, it has been 3 years and now I worry about if there will even be a planet left to live on by the time I can vote.

    • because he wants even a small chance of winning the next election. his approval ratings are low enough that he’s willing to do anything to get gas prices down, cause that’s what everyone has been blaming him for.

  6. Dinheiro não é tudo na vida!!! Parem destruir o nosso planeta, vocês são gananciosos tem milhares de dores e ainda quer mais?? O que vocês vão fazer vai ter um impacto enorme nas nossas vidas e principalmente na vida dos animais, eles são preciosos para a natureza e os animais não merece sofrer por arrogância de vocês.


    Money is not everything in life!!! Stop destroying our planet, you are greedy, you have thousands of pains and still want more?? What you are going to do will have a huge impact on our lives and especially on the lives of animals, they are precious to nature and animals do not deserve to suffer because of your arrogance.

  7. Why do this all for a piece of paper called money. It isnt right, the earth is our home guys and we are already destroying it by cutting down trees now they want to increase global warming and make earth die faster, it isnt fair that animals are always the ones to suffer for the benefits and wants of humans, the arctic is already deteriorating as we speak why would you want to kill it all for the love of money. Where will the penguins and polar bears live and what about the beautiful ocean that has over millions of creatures in it where will they go. How would they feel if someone chased them away from their home and had no where else to go. its sad what this world has come to all because of money .

  8. Why would President Joe do this? Money isn’t even worth life nor time. President Joe said he would protect the world and will protect us. But look, Alaska will be drilled a hole and he will get 8bill.

  9. Parem com essa ideia maluca o Alaska importa! VIDAS de animais importa! Por favor pense nisso!


    Stop this crazy idea Alaska matters! Animal LIVES matter! Please think about it!

  10. PLEASE STOP THE WILLOW PROJECT !!! You’re not just hurting the planet but you’re also hurting you!!! We can die from this willow project! money isn’t worth us dying! PLEASE HELP PROTECT THE PLANET!!

  11. We thought joe Biden was a good person.. he promised he would protect the world and protect us.. I even thought he was a good guy!!!! But no.. he lied and decided that he would damage the world just for money.. money is just paper .. it’s not worth anything. I hope he realizes what he has done and what a beautiful home we have but he just wants to damage it.. I hope he realizes.


  12. Pofavor não, apenas não, não, não é não
    E sério que o dinheiro é mais importante que o mundo?????


    Please no, just no, no, no it’s no
    And seriously, money is more important than the world?????

    • yea, like is alaska and its life worth only 8billion? aslo how can it be worth money. its a living thing, it effects everyone.

  13. biden is choosing to take our lives, hurting his “supporters” that he no longer has, hurting animals hurting climate. he is a horrible person if he confirms this he’s basically going to kill a bunch of animals and people due to his behaviour and choices. i’m only 11 years old and i might not even be able to get to the age of 20. i hate biden, if i die due to the project that MAY happen i’m blaming him.

  14. I’m only a 14 year old teenager. I am scared to death of this situation. I’ve always been dreaming of meeting my long distant partner. I don’t want to die before being able to do that. Why is our society like this? All just for the money. Destroying our earth… ruining everything. What is wrong with this world.

    I’ve been crying over this for hours. I can’t… I really hope that this doesn’t continue. This could kill all of us. That’s what i’m most afraid of. Death.

  15. Stop destroying the planet please money isn’t worth destroying the planet and killing us, if you destroy the planet you won’t even have money because he would be dead so why do it? For greed? Or do you just want us all to die? I’m 11 and my friends and I are scared thinking all of the animals are going to die and in the future our children well not live the same life we did. We all might die when we’re 20 I know he said yes today but I hope he changes his mind and Votes Against the willow project. If he kills me and everything I love I blame him.

  16. Before today we thought nothing was was worth more than our beautiful planet, but Biden clearly has different opinions, clearly he thinks money is worth more than the lovely environment where we live learn and love. We are only children of 11 but we even understand the consequences of our actions and doings. The environment is one of our unstressed vowel spelling words ,but really we should stress about it! This time yesterday we were laughing and playing in our lush world of nature, but now as we look outside our windows ,we can tell our world is angry, so we are to, we WILL do what we can to save the world If you agree don’t just sit on your bed mourning like we did, do something you may think your only one person who can’t do anything but your one of many and many can do a lot. So politicians, president and any one who can help our world, save us… and the earth with us.
    So please listen and do what you can to help because a little can do so much.
    Thank you in advance
    with all hope Velvet, Ella and Lucy

  17. Why is this happening is money better than living ? Is money more valuable ? Why are we doing this ? Why are we drilling if we will die ? What’s the point ? What do we do ? Why should we do this ? There are so many questions but I bet the kids parents fell very stupid after they realise after this there kid will not have a good life and have to suffer to live through all of this pain and torture. Why are we risking every thing for money ? But I know one thing for sure money got the better of us


  19. I’m going to make a few controversial statements here but have an open mind.

    1. Yes – we need to de-carbonise our economies to slow , halt and hopefully reverse global warming.

    2. That costs money. The US Government under Biden has done more than any other government in this regard – the subsidies being offered to the US citizens to make EV’a more affordable are a huge (and costly) initiative.

    3. (The controversial part) the Willow Project in itself will not add more carbon to the atmosphere than would otherwise be used – it is simply a new source that means the US government doesn’t have to pay foreign countries for the oil that would be used anyway. If the Willow Project does not go ahead the same amount of oil will be consumed – just from foreign sources which means the cost of living in the US goes up. Biden is allowing this project to go ahead because he can use the $$ to fund the subsidies needed to make renewable energy more accessible.

    4. If he didn’t allow this, then the inflation gets worse, most of the US voters get angry about paying higher $ to fill their cars and pay for groceries- so what do they do ? Vote for Trump.

    5. Trump gets in and there goes the whole green agenda, renewables get shelved, Eva subsidies gone – and the world gets a whole lot hotter faster

    Summary- it’s the lesser of 2 evils. The oil pumped out of the Willow project will pretty much equal the amount that won’t get pumped out of Saudi Arabia etc- it by itself will not cause global oil consumption to go up, it will just mean a local source of oil instead of a foreign source which means more $$ for the US to spend on the projects to transition to renewables and less likelihood that Trump or whatever conservative ends up contesting the next election wins.

    Trust me – what would be much worse than the Willow project going ahead is the Republicans winning the next US Presidential election.

  20. Hi my name is Lily and I am terrified of the weather project because just think about it if you wanna have a family I might not even be able to have a great grandchildren I have a grand children you’re putting all these lives at risk and it’s bad when regular people that aren’t scientist can see it when you guys can’t I would put a stop to this at least we know how much a republic is involved and wants to stop but people be able to live the life’s like I’m just thinking about it and you might not even be able to grandchildren so I might be 40 or 50 or 60 by the time all the metric tons something at least then then what are you gonna be dead am I just now to stop living not gonna be able to reflect the rest of my life normally like how I wanted it to know life isn’t fair but this is not life making the decision it’s a person so if we cannot see that it’s bad and we’re regular people and we’re pointing out things that are bad that’s gonna do but you can’t point out one good thing oh we’re gonna get some money off of it you can’t eat money you can’t breathe money you can’t have funMoney will never make you happy and that’s what they think it does because they’re all up in the penthouse when they know things are hard gas is up to Hy’s I’ll ridiculous oh we’re not getting the money you are but we are the ones who after supper so I want somebody to stop this because they’re thousands and thousands of people millions and millions of people that agree that this is bad please stop

  21. I’m 11 years old about to be 12 and I shouldn’t be on this trying to tell people how bad it is it’s bad that I can tell dad I am scared for the rest of my life Am I friends with just everybody this is stupid and ridiculous I don’t see anybody else panicking you should be because who knows what will survive they’re just guessing how much there is there could be more he doesn’t know what he’s doing and I live in Canada and I am it’s all over the news it’s everywhere people were scared at school crying cause I don’t know if they’ll ever be able to ever see these people again

  22. I am turning 12 this next wens-day And I was on my TikTok and saw Joe Biden accepted the willow project.

    I don’t approve of the willow project because I don’t think Joe Biden knows that it will kill everything on the earth and that’s including him and if kids watch the news with there parents how do you think they feel how do you think the parents feel when there kids ask “mom, dad what is the willow project”?

    The parents have to tell them because they don’t want to lie to there kids they are probably so scared and traumatized right now.

    if this message doesn’t change anything then than it proves that you don’t care about other people,kids,and animals lives. And it will be scary for kids in the future because they won’t know what to expect in there life they will never be able to live a normal life like we used to.

    I am almost 12 and scared I might to die.

  23. I hate this project it’s killing earth u want money why Biden and the other ppl have already enough money why do they need more it’s also killing the animal’s


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