Federal judge sides with ConocoPhillips in its Alaskan Arctic drilling venture

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ConocoPhillips said it would begin work “immediately” on its $7 billion Willow project in Alaska’s Arctic after a federal judge on Monday ruled against environmentalists who tried to stop the drilling effort.

Reuters reported U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason in Anchorage had been asked by environmental groups and a Native American community in two lawsuits filed last month for an order blocking construction on the $7 billion Willow project over concerns it would exacerbate climate change and damage pristine wildlife habitat.

After the ruling, a spokesperson for ConocoPhillips said the decision will allow the company to begin construction activities “immediately” and that the project will provide “meaningful opportunities” for the state, its Native American communities and for domestic U.S. energy production.

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