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Shell Wants To Resume Arctic Drilling This Year

Royal Dutch Shell says it wants to revive its Arctic oil-drilling program this year following a nearly two-year suspension.

Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said in London on January 29 that his company would proceed with Arctic drilling if it was allowed to.

Shell, a Dutch-British company, said it is intent on restarting its Arctic drilling campaign in the Alaskan part of the Chukchi Sea this summer.

But Van Beurden said the firm still needs to get the right permits from the U.S. Interior Department and fend off a number of legal challenges before it could resume drilling.

Opposition to Arctic drilling has been fierce, with environmentalists saying the risk of an oil spill is high.

The Arctic region is estimated to contain 20 percent of the world's undiscovered hydrocarbon resources.

Plans for drilling north of the Arctic Circle are under way in the United States, Russia, and Norway.

Based on reporting by Reuters and the BBC