ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - ConocoPhillips Alaska says it will delay its 2014 plans for exploratory drilling in the Arctic Ocean off Alaska's northwest coast. In a press release, the company announced that it will put its Chukchi Sea drilling plans on hold "because of uncertainties of evolving federal regulatory requirements and operational permitting standards."
It says it would not be prudent at this time to devote the financial resources needed to preserve the option to drill ConocoPhillips Alaska President Trond-Erik Johansen says the company is confident in its ability to safely drill but that more time is needed to ensure that all regulatory stakeholders are aligned. An environmental group opposed to drilling hailed the decision. Chris Krenz of Oceana says specific Arctic standards must be put in place before drilling is allowed.