The Coastal Plain EIS:

The Bureau of Land Management is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to implement an oil and gas leasing program within the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Coastal Plain.

I am concerned that the Draft EIS (DEIS) fails to address the potential degradation of the area's exceptional wilderness, aesthetic and recreational values. I wanted to understand the degradation's likely extent and severity, so I conducted a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) visibility analysis to determine how oil and gas development infrastructure would likely impact visual resources throughout the Coastal Plain, and from the Mollie Beattie Wilderness.

The results of my analysis are undeniable: the visual impacts of Coastal Plain development would be severely damaging and wide-ranging, and the final EIS must include such an analysis in order to adequately consider the potential environmental impacts of the program.

I have submitted comments, including my research methodology and results, for the DEIS to the BLM. If you want to submit your own comments, the closing date is February 11, 2019.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW MY COMMENTS (4 MB pdf)

I am also making my data available to the public, via a dropbox.com download. This includes both the source data that went into the analysis as well as the ouput results.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE DATA (1.6 GB zip)
Above, one image from my DEIS comments, showing the vast expanse that would be impacted by oil and gas extraction. The darker the reddish color, the shorter a structure (such as a derrick or building) would need to be in order to be visible from the six depicted rivers flowing through the Coastal Plain study area.