“One of the most frustrating things about the Obama administration is the tendency of its leaders and communicators to project a message that’s absolutely demoralizing to progressive political activists,” writes left-of-center blogger Matt Yglesias.

Demoralizing? I don’t know what he’s talking about:

The Interior Department today announced plans to open 1.8 million acres of Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve to new oil and gas drilling.

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The Bureau of Land Management is selling leases on 190 tracts in the reserve. Bidding will close Aug. 11.

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Nearly 1 million acres in and around the reserve’s Teshekpuk Lake were put off-limits to drilling to protect important habitat for migratory birds and the local caribou herd.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said the lease sale balances a commitment to energy production with environmental protection.

(Patrick Reis reporting for E&E [subscription required]; more here.)


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