A coalition of conservation organizations filed a lawsuit in Alaska federal court on July 10th, 2012 challenging the federal government's approval of Shell Oil Company's Chukchi and Beaufort Sea spill response plans.
The plans, approved by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), describe how Shell says it will prepare for and respond to a major oil spill caused by exploration drilling in America's Arctic Ocean. Shell's drill rigs are headed for the Arctic right now and could be in place in a matter of weeks. A decision in this lawsuit would be the first in a challenge to offshore oil spill response plans in the United States. Below is the full text of the complaint.