An initial step toward opening up an Arctic wilderness area in Alaska to oil and gas development unveils a revenue stream for the state, the governor said. A document published Friday in the Federal Register by the U.S. Interior Department outlined plans for a leasing environmental impact statement for an oil and gas leasing plan. The area under consideration includes 1.6 million acres in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, designated as the so-called 1002 Area. Alaska Gov. Bill Walker said opening ANWR up to drillers presented a historic opportunity for the state. “This is an important priority for my administration given the potential for significant new revenues from lease sales and production,” he said in a statement late Thursday. The U.S. tax reform passed late last year included language inserted by U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski likened the 1002 Area. Murkowski’s office said […]