U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski says the Obama administration has picked the most restrictive management plan possible for the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.
The Alaska Republican says putting half of the reserve off limits to petroleum development denies revenue and jobs to taxpayers when the nation faces record debt and unemployment.
Murkowski issued her statement Monday after Interior Secretary Ken Salazar in Anchorage unveiled the preferred management proposal for the 23-million acre reserve on Alaska's North Slope.
Salazar says the proposal balances wildlife protection, subsistence requirements of 40 Alaska Native villages and the nation's need for additional petroleum.
Salazar says the plan makes the most promising lease areas available for development and includes a route that could be used for a pipeline to move oil from Chukchi (chuk-CHEE') Sea offshore leases.