U.S. President Barack Obama waves as he leaves the podium after speaking to journalists during his last news conference of the year at the White House in Washington, U.S., December 16, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Obama used a 1950s-era law called the Outer Continental Shelf Act that allows presidents to limit areas from mineral leasing and drilling. Environmental groups said that meant Trump’s incoming administration would have to go court if it sought to reverse the move.
The ban affects 115 million acres (46.5 million hectares) of federal waters off Alaska in the Chukchi Sea and most of the Beaufort Sea and 3.8 million acres (1.5 million hectares) in the Atlantic from New England to Chesapeake Bay.
Trump, who succeeds Obama on Jan. 20, has said he would expand offshore oil and gas drilling. A recent memo from his energy transition team said his policy could increase production in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, as well as the mid- and south Atlantic.
A Trump representative did not immediately comment on the announcement.
Even if Trump tries to fight the move, few energy companies have expressed a desire to …
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