On Arctic Offshore, Symbolic Support from Anchorage

As protests continue against offshore oil development, the Anchorage Assembly cast a symbolic show of support for this season’s work in the Arctic.

The Port of Anchorage doesn’t have very much to do with the battles over Shell’s plans to explore offshore oil reserves in the Chukchi Sea this summer. But Tuesday’s resolution is more about acting prudently than politically, and showing solidarity with the Port of Seattle.

“The primary purpose is to ensure that Shell can make appropriate preparations for their summer season,” said Assembly Member Patrick Flynn, who introduced the measure. “It’s just a gentle love-note to our southern brethren that we recognize there are disagreements, but we think it’s important that the exploration take place in as safe a manner as possible.”

The resolution passed unanimously.

Later in the meeting, Assembly members voted to postpone public testimony on a measure that could ban alcohol sales to anyone that has used the Sleep Off Center in Anchorage three or more times in a year. The move came in response to privacy concerns raised by the ACLU. The measure will be reconsidered at the Assembly’s June 23rd meeting.