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Daschle announces end to plan for Alaska drilling

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WASHINGTON, D.C. ? Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D, S.D.) announced that plans for oil drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge have come to a halt.

The Bush administration had wanted to drill for oil in the ANWR as part of an overall increase in domestic oil production. Daschle said on the NBC news program 'Meet the Press' that the opponents to breaking a Democratic filibuster had fallen short of the required number of votes.

Backers of the refuge have challenged the limited nature of a proposed 2,000-hectare drilling area and said severe damage would be done to the delicate Arctic ecosystem.