‘The President Made Stifling American Energy Independence A Day One Priority’

SENATE REPUBLICAN LEADER MITCH McCONNELL (R-KY): “Remember, the President made stifling American energy independence a Day One priority, killing miles of pipeline and freezing new jobs and new exploration with the stroke of a pen.” (Sen. McConnell, Remarks, 3/01/2022)


Earlier Today, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki Dismissed Calls To Reverse These Harmful Polices, Declaring That They Would Not ‘Address The Issue At All’

FOX NEWS’ DANA PERINO: “Will there be anything in the speech to talk about reversing some of those policies, for example, either Keystone Pipeline or allowing our oil and gas companies to pursue federal oil and gas leases, even while we try to transition, in the future, in a -- with a smart path to greener energy?...”
WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY JEN PSAKI: “But, Dana, the policies you mentioned… they are not policies that would address the issue at all. This Keystone Pipeline, it would take years for that to have an impact on prices. Obviously, there are a range of reasons why the president opposes it, but it wasn't functioning, isn't functioning. It would take years.” (Fox News, 3/1/2022)


From Its Very First Day In Office, The Biden Administration Has Worked To Shut Down American Oil And Natural Gas Production On Federal Lands And Make American Energy More Difficult To Extract And Transport

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL BOARD: “Democrats are blaming everyone but President Biden…. The Biden Administration has slow-rolled oil and gas permits, halted lease sales on federal land, suspended leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and pushed financial regulation to deny capital to fossil fuels—all while activist progressive investors abet the industry’s strangulation.” (Editorial, “Suspend the Gas Tax, They Cried,” The Wall Street Journal, 2/11/2022)

On His First Day In Office, President Biden Cancelled The Keystone XL Pipeline, Making It More Difficult And More Expensive To Get Oil To Refineries And ‘Sending An Early Signal That The Climate Panic Will Trump Nearly Everything Else In His Administration’

“The Canadian pipeline company that had long sought to build the Keystone XL pipeline announced [in June] that it had terminated the embattled project, which would have carried petroleum from Canadian tar sands to Nebraska. The announcement was the death knell for a project that had been on life support since President Biden’s first day in office and had been stalled by legal battles for years before that, despite support from the Trump administration.” (“The Keystone XL Pipeline Project Has Been Terminated,” The New York Times, 6/09/2021)

“President Joe Biden formally announced on [January 20th] he was revoking a key permit for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, the second time a Democratic administration has scuttled the $8 billion project in less than a decade. Biden’s action was part of a series of executive orders on his first day in office …” (“Biden Kills Keystone XL Permit, Again,” Politico, 1/20/2021)

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL BOARD: “President Biden issued a blizzard of executive orders on his first day in office, including a diktat to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline. This is a slap at Canada, and it sends a message to investors that playing by U.S. rules provides no immunity from arbitrary political whim. … Killing Keystone won’t keep fossil fuels in the ground. It will merely strand billions of dollars in Canadian investment and kill thousands of U.S. jobs while enriching adversaries and alienating an ally. … Mr. Biden is sending an early signal that the climate panic will trump nearly everything else in his Administration. The unstated but operative message from the Keystone kill is that he will use regulation and permitting to do the dirty work.” (Editorial, “Biden’s Keystone Pipeline Kill,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/20/2021)

During His First Week In Office, President Biden Issued A Moratorium On Oil And Natural Gas Exploration On Federal Lands

“The Biden administration announced [January 21st] a … suspension of new oil and gas leasing and drilling permits for U.S. lands and waters, as officials moved quickly to reverse Trump administration policies on energy and the environment. The suspension, part of a broad review of programs at the Department of Interior, went into effect immediately under an order signed Wednesday by [the] Acting Interior Secretary … It follows Democratic President Joe Biden’s campaign pledge to halt new drilling on federal lands and end the leasing of publicly owned energy reserves as part of his plan to address climate change.” (“Biden Halts Oil And Gas Leases, Permits On US Land And Water,” The Associated Press, 1/21/2021)

‘Holding Back New Drilling Permits Would Gradually Reduce Production On Federal Land,’ Which Makes Up ‘About A Quarter Of Annual U.S. Production’

“[T]he federal government owns large swaths of land companies use for oil-and-gas drilling. Such a policy would heavily impact energy producing states such as New Mexico and Wyoming, which together have almost 53.8 million acres of federal land, according to the Congressional Research Service. U.S. oil production on federal lands grew to 954.3 million barrels in fiscal 2019, up 28% from fiscal 2016, Interior Department data showed. Drilling on federal land and water generated almost $6 billion in government revenue last year.” (“Biden’s Order to Freeze New Oil Drilling on Federal Land: What You Need to Know,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/27/2021)

And The Biden Administration Spent The Summer Working To Curtail Oil And Gas Production And Exploration In Alaska

“The Biden administration on [June 1st] suspended oil and gas leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, reversing a drilling program approved by the Trump administration and reviving a political fight over a remote region that is home to polar bears and other wildlife — and a rich reserve of oil. The order by Interior Secretary Deb Haaland follows a temporary moratorium on oil and gas lease activities imposed by President Joe Biden on his first day in office.” (“Biden Suspends Oil Leases In Alaska’s Arctic Refuge,” The Associated Press, 6/01/2021)

“The Interior Department will review and could replace the Trump-era management plan for the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska that put millions more acres on the table for possible oil and gas development, the agency announced Tuesday. An initial assessment of the management plan shows that it conflicts with President Joe Biden’s executive order in January to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to a legal memorandum filed in a U.S. District Court case in Anchorage on Tuesday.” (“Biden Administration To Reconsider Trump-Era Plan That Expanded Drilling Opportunities In National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska,” Anchorage Daily News, 9/08/2021)

In November, The Biden Administration Announced A New 20 Year Ban On Oil And Gas Leasing In Part Of New Mexico

“President Biden will announce on Monday that his administration is moving to block new federal oil and gas leasing within a 10-mile radius around Chaco Canyon in New Mexico …” (The New York Times, 11/15/2021)

  • “In the coming weeks, administration officials said, the Bureau of Land Management, which is part of the Interior Department, will publish a notice in the Federal Register that will initiate the process of banning new oil and gas leases on federal land in the 10-mile radius around Chaco Culture National Historical Park for a period of 20 years.” (The New York Times, 11/15/2021)
  • “Enacting the new plan to protect the area around Chaco Canyon will be Interior Secretary Deb Haaland … a former environmental activist …” (The New York Times, 11/15/2021)

ROBERT McENTYRE, New Mexico Oil & Gas Association spokesman: “There doesn’t appear to be a scientific or environmental rationale for that 10-mile radius…. And given the role that oil and gas plays in the economy of that area, we shouldn’t have an arbitrary number that would limit economic opportunities, perhaps the only economic opportunities, in that part of the state…. No one is saying that we want to develop inside the park or that we need to be directly inside its boundaries…. But the 10-mile number appears to be arbitrary. Especially over such a long period that could have generational consequences.” (The New York Times, 11/15/2021) 

‘The Oil Industry Is Emerging As A Primary Target Of President Biden’s Climate Policy’

“The oil industry is emerging as a primary target of President Biden’s climate policy, setting the stage for a confrontation that could shape the future of the energy sector. The president is [issued] an executive order Wednesday that would suspend new oil and gas leasing on federal land … in what is widely seen as a first step toward fulfilling Mr. Biden’s campaign pledge to stop drilling on federal lands and offshore. Drilling on federal lands accounts for roughly 9% of U.S. onshore production, but oil industry leaders see a curtailment on future development as a significant threat….” (“Biden’s Climate-Change Policy Targets Oil Industry,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/26/2021)

‘Any Doubt That The Biden Administration Plans To Slowly Regulate Fossil Fuels Out Of Existence Vanished’

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL BOARD: “Any doubt that the Biden Administration plans to slowly regulate fossil fuels out of existence vanished [in January]. First came the Keystone XL pipeline kill, but perhaps more significant is the 60-day freeze on new leases on federal lands and bureaucratic permitting. The pause could soon become a long-term ban. Federal lands account for about 22% of U.S. oil production, 12% of natural gas and 40% of coal. When the Obama Administration slowed oil and gas permitting on federal land, drilling and exploration shifted to private land. The Biden Administration may shut that down too.” (Editorial, “Biden’s Fossil-Fuel Freeze,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/22/2021)

  • “[S]hale fracking occurs in large part on federal land in western states, and it continually requires new leases and investment. Federal land accounts for 51.9% of New Mexico’s oil production and 66.8% of its natural gas, as well as a sizable share of gas extraction in Colorado (41.6%), Utah (63.2%) and Wyoming (92.1%). A federal leasing ban would cost some 18,000 jobs in Colorado, 33,000 in Wyoming and 62,000 in New Mexico by 2022, according to the American Petroleum Institute. States would also lose hundreds of millions of dollars of mineral royalties that are shared by the feds. Oil and gas revenue accounts for 20% of New Mexico’s budget. Downstream suppliers like fracking sand mines in Wisconsin and steel manufacturers in Pennsylvania would also be hit.” (Editorial, “Biden’s Fossil-Fuel Freeze,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/22/2021)

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL BOARD: “[I]t’s worth going down the list of ways this Administration has tried to punish U.S. producers. At a presidential debate last year, Mr. Biden said he would ‘transition away from the oil industry.’ His first day in office, Mr. Biden revoked the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, which was supposed to carry oil from Canada and the Bakken Shale to refineries on the Gulf Coast. A week later he issued an order placing a moratorium on new oil-and-gas leases on federal lands and waters. A court blocked that moratorium, but the Interior Department got the presidential message. It approved a mere 171 drilling permits on federal lands in August, down 75% from April. The Biden Administration also moved to suspend existing leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and it initiated a fresh review of Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve that could put it off limits as well. Get it—a ‘petroleum reserve’ will be off limits for petroleum. Mr. Biden also signed a Congressional resolution that vitiated the Trump Administration’s regulation on methane leaks from fossil-fuel production. The White House probably will replace it with a stringent standard that will make fracking more expensive. The Administration is also unleashing financial regulators against the industry. The Federal Reserve and other bureaucracies are looking to impose new rules on ‘climate-related financial risk,’ as a May order from Mr. Biden put it. The purpose is to close off sources of funding and raise the cost of capital for the industry, and it’s succeeding. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which oversees natural-gas pipelines, has signaled it probably will start requiring a climate study before approving even the smallest infrastructure upgrades. That will raise the bar for worthy projects, while creating costs for climate mitigation. As one sign of the regulatory gantlet, two different proposed pipelines in the past two years have won a case at the Supreme Court and then been canceled anyway.” (Editorial, “Biden Suddenly Loves Frackers,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/15/2021)

FLASHBACK: Joe Biden During The 2020 Presidential Campaign: ‘No More Drilling On Federal Lands, Period. Period, Period, Period.’

“As a candidate, Mr. Biden promised to stop issuing new leases for drilling on public lands. ‘And by the way, no more drilling on federal lands, period. Period, period, period,’ Mr. Biden told voters in New Hampshire in February 2020.” (“Interior Dept. Report On Drilling Is Mostly Silent On Climate Change,” The New York Times, 11/26/2021)




Related Issues: Energy