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Monday, 31 August 2015 18:00

Obama, Alaskan Sen. Murkowski battle over energy policies

The U.S. state Alaska may seem like an insignificant territory for most Americans, and even less for the world; however, with its rich energy resources and its vocal senator about the U.S. energy security, it is under spotlight before President Obama's 3-day visit, Caspian Energy News (www.caspianenergy.net) reports with reference to the Anadolu Agency.

President Barack Obama and the U.S. Senator from Alaska, Lisa Murkowski, have come face to face a numerous times in the past year over some of the most controversial issues in domestic politics and American energy security, which make this week's visit even more important.

It is not only the president's emphasis on the issue of climate change before his Alaska visit, but the ban on crude oil exports, the controversial Keystone XL pipeline and even the nuclear deal with Iran have put the two figures on the same ring against each other.

Before his visit to Alaska, Obama talked in his weekly address last Saturday about the significance of climate change, as he mentioned extensive wildfires, bigger storm surges, faster sea ice and glacier melting, swift shoreline erosion, and rising sea levels in Alaska.

However, Sen. Murkowski urged the president on Aug. 24 to "avoid a singular focus" and not use climate change as "an excuse to deprive Alaskans of their best economic prospects."

As Obama advocated more use of renewable energy to replace hydrocarbons, the senator's answer was already ready.

"Many renewable energy projects in our state were made possible with state revenues derived from oil production," Sen. Murkowski explained in a statement addressing the president last Monday.

"Rather than increasing the regulatory burdens imposed upon us, the president should direct federal agencies to work in greater partnership with our state government," he said, adding that climate change is an opportunity for the federal government to partner with Alaskans to cooperate.

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