STATEMENT: CAP’s Conathan on Shell’s Arctic Drilling Postponement

Washington, D.C. — As Royal Dutch Shell announced today that it would postpone its Arctic oil drilling operations until 2013, the Center for American Progress released the following statement from Michael Conathan, Director of Ocean Policy:

Ever-shifting sea ice and technical challenges have proven too much for Shell, bearing out predictions that the Arctic is simply too volatile to allow for safe drilling operations. Shell’s inability to get its own equipment in order, despite a massive investment of time and money, should give pause to any company with similar plans, and the same challenges will remain next year. Until we develop adequate safeguards and sufficient response infrastructure to manage and support drilling operations, the Arctic should remain off limits to drilling.

Watch “Oil and Ice: The Risks of Drilling in Alaska’s Arctic Ocean

To speak with Michael Conathan, please contact Christina DiPasquale at 202.481.8181 or