Hillary Clinton: Arctic drilling 'not worth the risk'

2015-08-18 20:31
Hillary Clinton (AP)

Hillary Clinton (AP)

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Washington - US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said in a Twitter post on Tuesday that drilling for oil and gas in the Arctic Ocean was "not worth the risk".

"The Arctic is a unique treasure," Clinton said.

The Obama administration on Monday gave Royal Dutch Shell final approval to resume drilling in the environmentally fragile ocean for the first time since 2012.

Shell obtained the leases during the administration of former President George W Bush.

Arctic drilling is sure to be a contentious issue in the presidential campaign as more Arctic lease sales are scheduled for 2016 and 2017.

Environmentalists oppose the drilling, saying any spill would harm walruses, whales, and polar bears in a region scientists say is already vulnerable to climate change.

The Arctic contains 20% of the world's undiscovered oil and gas, the US government estimates, making it a coveted resource.

Shell suffered a series of mishaps in 2012 in the Arctic, including losing control of an oil rig from which Coast Guard divers dropped from helicopters had to rescue 18 crew. But the company says Arctic oil, which would not be produced for at least a decade, is needed to meet growing global demand.

On other energy issues, Clinton has sought to balance environmental and economic concerns. Previously she said she would seek to phase out fossil fuel extraction and increase fees on companies operating on public lands in a way that does not disrupt the economy, if she becomes president.

Clinton has been careful not to comment on whether she would approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada ahead of an expected ruling by President Barack Obama.

Read more on:    hillary clinton  |  us  |  us elections 2016  |  environment  |  climate change

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