An executive order from Biden earlier this year called for a temporary moratorium on activities related to the leasing program and for the Interior secretary to review the program and “as appropriate and consistent with applicable law,” conduct a new environmental review.
In June, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said her review had found “multiple legal deficiencies” in the record supporting the leases, including an environmental review that failed to “adequately analyze a reasonable range of alternatives.” She directed a temporary halt on department activities related to the leasing program until a new review was done.
Interior Department official Laura Daniel-Davis, in a letter to the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority, said the additional environmental review would be undertaken to “determine whether the leases should be reaffirmed, voided or subject to additional mitigation measures.”
The corporation alleges federal officials "have engaged in a politically driven, systematic campaign to prevent any Coastal Plain development."
The lawsuit filed Thursday lists as defendants Biden, Haaland and Interior Department officials.