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Congress Shuts Down Biden’s Energy Policy, Passes Act to Continue Natural Gas Exports

In a significant blow to President Biden’s climate agenda, the House of Representatives voted in favor of a bill aimed at preventing the administration from permitting new natural gas export projects.

The contentious legislation, known as the Unlocking Domestic LNG Potential Act, underscores deep divisions over environmental policy and energy security.

Bipartisan Support for the Bill

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The House approved the Unlocking Domestic LNG Potential Act with a vote of 224-200, garnering support from 215 Republicans and nine Democrats.

Reversal of Biden’s LNG Export Policy

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The bill, introduced by Rep. August Pfluger, R-Texas, aims to reverse Biden’s recent actions pausing permits for liquefied natural gas (LNG) export projects.

Rationale Behind the Legislation

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Rep. Pfluger justified the bill by asserting that Biden’s moratorium on LNG exports undermines U.S. energy independence and benefits geopolitical adversaries like Russia and Iran.

He argued that the bill is essential for protecting American jobs and preserving energy security amid global uncertainties.

Proposed Amendments to the Natural Gas Act

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If enacted, the bill would amend the Natural Gas Act of 1938, granting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) exclusive authority over LNG export projects.

It seeks to streamline the approval process and ensure that decisions align with the public interest.

Criticism of Biden’s Stance on Natural Gas

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President Biden’s decision to halt pending natural gas export projects has drawn criticism from energy associations, Republicans, and former federal officials.

They argue that LNG exports play a vital role in stabilizing energy prices, supporting allies, and reducing global carbon emissions.

Environmental Concerns and Democratic Opposition

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Environmental activists and Democratic lawmakers have voiced opposition to the legislation, citing concerns about exacerbating climate change and favoring Chinese industry.

Short Term Interests Over Long Term Sustainability

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They argue that the bill prioritizes short-term economic interests over long-term environmental sustainability.

Senate Consideration and Potential Veto

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The bill now moves to the Senate, where Sen. Tim Scott and fellow Republicans have introduced companion legislation

Biden Threatens to Veto

Credit: (NEW) President of the United States Joe Biden delivers remarks on a possible default of the debt in a speech at Westchester Community College in Valhalla, New York. May 10, 2023. — Photo by thenews2.com

Despite bipartisan support in the House, the White House has indicated that President Biden would veto the bill if it passed the Senate, citing concerns about consumer protection and energy security.

Implications for Energy Policy and Climate Action

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The passage of the Unlocking Domestic LNG Potential Act highlights the ongoing debate surrounding energy policy and climate action in the United States.

As lawmakers grapple with competing priorities, the fate of the bill will shape the trajectory of the country’s energy landscape and its commitment to environmental stewardship.

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