The Association of Village Council Presidents says that leasing in the outer continental shelf will hurt traditional subsistence practices hundreds of miles away.
AVCP filed comments with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management this week objecting to proposed oil and gas lease sales in the Bering Sea. They specifically objected to lease sales in the Saint Matthew-Hall, Norton, Navarin, Aleutian, and Saint George Basins.
Representatives of AVCP met last year with federal officials to urge them to withdraw the Bering Sea from the five-year oil and gas leasing program, citing impacts to both subsistence and commercial fishing in the region's communities, including the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. AVCP has also requested that the federal government consult meaningfully with tribes in the region by holding hearings in the affected communities.
Former President Obama instituted a presidential order protecting much of that offshore region as the Northern Bering Sea Resilience Area in late 2016. It was revoked the following February by President Trump.