The Biden administration formally issued a record of decision on Monday, May 1, allowing the development of a massive natural gas pipeline and export project in Alaska.
According to Fox News, the Department of Energy (DOE) finalized the project's approval with additional environmental protections, despite opposition from environmental groups, reaffirming the 2020 decision made under the Trump administration.
The $38.7 billion project includes an 807-mile pipeline and an export terminal and would significantly boost U.S. natural gas exports to Asia. Alaska Gasline Development Corporation (AGDC), the project developer and a state-owned venture praised the decision, saying it would allow the U.S. to boost energy supplies to allies.
Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, who advocated for the project, said it was the only major LNG project in the U.S. with all its permits, export license, and federal loan guarantees.
AGDC estimates the project would create 10,000 jobs during construction and 1,000 permanent jobs while delivering 2.6 billion cubic feet of liquefied natural gas (LNG) daily.
However, environmental groups criticized the project, saying it would cause a massive uptick in greenhouse emissions and threaten Alaska's ecosystems and climate.
According to Erin Colón, a senior attorney for Earthjustice, a law firm that challenged the project in court, greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels would increase by nearly 30%, which conflicts with the need to tackle the climate crisis.