To the Editor,
I’m a Bowdoin junior and member of the new campus chapter of Defenders of Wildlife. Our current focus is on preventing the exploitation of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from drilling by oil and gas companies. Not only is the Refuge home to incredible biodiversity—scientists call it the “Serengeti of the Arctic”—it’s the homeland of Indigenous peoples, such as the Gwich’in Nation, who have spoken out in clear opposition of drilling initiatives. I’ve been extremely disappointed by the extensive rollbacks of environmental protection policies under our current administration and there are serious biological, cultural and climate-related consequences to proceeding with drilling in the Refuge. I’m encouraged by the leadership of Maine representatives Jared Golden and Chellie Pingree in voting to pass HR1146 in the House of Representatives. I hope you will join us in prioritizing the interests of people and ecosystems over those of corporations by joining Defenders and putting pressure on companies like Exxon, Chevron, ConocoPhillips and Hillcorps NOT to bid on oil and gas leases in the Refuge.
Audrey Reuman ’21