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The US tried to lease 10 million acres of land to oil firms in Alaska—but they only bid for a tiny fraction

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The US tried to lease more than 10 million acres of explorable land in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. But oil firms only bid for 80,000 acres on Wednesday (Dec. 6).

Published   |  Photo by Reuters/Kristine Sowl/USFWS/Handout
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The government announced the lease sale in October, as part of the Trump administration’s plan to increase US production of oil, gas, and coal.

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But oil companies did not seem that interested, preferring to explore other areas with more potential in Alaska, or focus on the continental US.

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Two firms, ConocoPhillips Alaska and Anadarko Petroleum, bid for seven tracts of land out of the 900 tracts that were offered.

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The lease sale, the largest ever from the reserve, received criticism from environmental groups. The reserve has large populations of bears, wolves, and caribous.

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