Not an easy task to stop oil drilling in Alaska.

Courtesy of The Independent:

Environmental groups are suing a US government agency over concerns that oil exploration in Alaska could kill off endangered Beluga whales.

They want to force the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to void a permit allowing exploration in waters used by the whales in the Cook Inlet.

It comes after a new population report showed that the whales are fewer in number and declining faster than previously thought.

The new estimate says just 279 beluga whales are left in the Cook Inlet, down from 1,300 in 1979.

The decline amounts to around 2.3 per cent over the past decade, “daunting” numbers which need to trigger immediate action to stop exploration planned by Hilcorp Energy Company, according to the Center for Biological Diversity.

The group’s attorney, Julie Teel Simmonds, said there’s a duty to reconsider and ‘analyse if there’s new information that’s significant and indicates that the activities that they authorised would cause harm’. The community non-profit organisation Cook Inletkeeper is also suing the NOAA.

I have to say that I have not spotted Belugas in Cook Inlet for at least a decade now. 

They used to be fairly abundant and I saw them at least once a year. 

But then again I have watched major corporations rape and ransack my state seemingly unfettered by rules or regulations for decades now. 

Soon, if we do not do something, there will be nothing remaining of Alaska’s immense beauty but a smoldering crater in the middle of the state.