In yet another example of overzealous land confiscation on the part of the DOI, the WSJ is reporting that Interior has "designated 187,000 square miles of offshore sea ice and other areas as critical habitat for polar bears". This act will severely hamper drilling activity in that large, oil rich region. Although the designation doesn't automatically close off the land to development, it calls on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to research whether outside development will negatively effect the polar bear population. Furthermore, it exposes the developers to endless lawsuits from radical eco-socialist public interest law firms.
This is a perfect illustration of the regressivness of the progressives. They will destroy hundreds of local jobs in Alaska, while simultaneously keeping the price of energy high and unaffordable for the "little guy" whom they purport to care for.
It is also another example of the growing amount of public land that is either directly owned by the Feds or heavily regulated. The DOI has been using contrived pseudo- environmental concerns to thwart other important activities in different parts of the country. Obama's DOI has been hamstringing our border agents by preventing them from building watch towers along the border due to concerns about plant and animal life in the Arizona desert.
The pattern of overzealous regulations and land annexation on the part of the DOI is very disconcerting. This is another reason why it is so vital that we have solid conservatives calling the shots on the natural resources and energy committees. Any future chairman of those committees must make it an immediate priority to reign in the interior department's unconstitutional infringement on our economy, security, and pursuit of happiness.
Cross-posted to Red Meat Conservative