Governor Sean Parnell has requested that officials from the State of Alaska be included on the panel reviewing the Expedited Assessment of 2012 Arctic Operations. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar formed the panel after a transportation accident led to the grounding of the drill rig Kulluk near Kodiak last month.
"Given the importance of this review to the future of the State, and the world-renowned expertise of Alaska's marine and regulatory public servants, we request that officials from the State of Alaska be included on the panel undertaking this review," Governor Parnell said. "Alaskans also have the utmost respect for the Coast Guard's unequalled experience in protecting Alaska's mariners and marine environment and the North Slope Borough's critical importance as a local stakeholder, and we anticipate your panel will benefit from participation from the Coast Guard and the borough, as well."
Governor Parnell noted that hundreds of exploration and development wells have been safely and responsibly drilled in state and federal waters off Alaska's coasts, including wells drilled in federal waters in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas.
"We share your commitment to safe and responsible development of energy resources in the Arctic, and agree that these activities are essential to the nation's energy and economic security," the governor added. "We are pleased that BOEM's review will be completed in a 60 day period. The recent events should be looked upon as valuable learning moments to further improve safety in future development."
A copy of the governor's letter is available at: