HEAT Members Condemn Biden Administration's 60-Day Ban on Oil and Gas Leases
WASHINGTON, D.C.—House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) joined over 30 members of the House Energy Action Team to strongly condemn the Biden Administration's 60-day moratorium on issuing oil and gas leases on federal lands and waters.
Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.): “President Biden’s decision to halt energy leasing and permits will eliminate good jobs and undermine America’s energy security. This day-one attack on American energy jobs signals an alarming return to the same failed energy policies of the past that inflicted real harm on hard-working families. Over the past four years, America has become energy dominant, resulting in a more secure country, lower energy prices for hard-working families, and thousands of good-paying American jobs. Let’s not forget that it was similar policies during the Obama Administration that resulted in gas prices higher than $4 per gallon, utility bills that skyrocketed, and thousands of jobs lost. This harmful action by President Biden, on just his first full day in office, threatens the economic livelihoods of millions of American families, and should be immediately reversed. The last thing we need in the middle of a global pandemic is more unemployed Americans and higher energy costs for families who are already struggling. Energy made in America creates jobs, lowers the cost of gas and electricity for all American families and small businesses, and advances American interests on the world stage. Additionally, these leases bring critical dollars for coastal restoration, flood protection, public education and countless other public services in the states that host these activities. I urge the Biden Administration to get serious about supporting American energy independence and stand ready to work with President Biden to protect our nation’s energy abundance both on and off America’s shores.”
HEAT Co-Chair, Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.): “The Biden Administration’s order to prohibit oil and gas leasing on federal lands for the next sixty days is yet another attempt to undermine American energy dominance. This order puts thousands of American jobs at risk and will force energy production to foreign adversaries and other countries with much lower environmental standards than the United States. This is a serious step in the wrong direction, and I urge President Biden to reconsider.”
HEAT Co-Chair, Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.): “It was no secret Joe Biden planned to destroy the oil and gas industry if elected president and in the first two days of his administration, he’s taken actions to do just that. This move only makes us more dependent on foreign oil and increases prices for American families, not to mention eliminates good-paying jobs in the middle of a pandemic. I strongly oppose this decision and I urge the Biden Administration to reconsider.”
Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.): “This order from the Biden/Harris Administration is deeply misguided and would have severe ramifications in Wyoming. At a time when we need to be doing everything possible to support our energy producers and our economy, prohibiting BLM offices from leasing and permitting will negatively impact so many hard-working families who rely on the national treasures in our state to make a living. I will fight aggressively for the interests of our energy industry, and will stand with our partners in Wyoming to use all the tools at our disposal to challenge this senseless order and future ones like it.”
House Committee on Natural Resources Ranking Member Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.): “The U.S. federal government owns and controls roughly 640 million acres of land across the country, much of which is rich with natural resources. Locking it up and throwing away the key would be a huge mistake. President Biden has openly supported banning all mineral leasing on federal land, and this temporary moratorium only creates more uncertainty. We can sustainably use these resources in a way that guarantees a strong economy and American energy independence. Prohibiting all federal land leasing would eliminate countless jobs and public services supported by federal energy development in rural communities.”
Chairman of the Congressional Western Caucus Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.): “This unilateral move is one of several dangerous actions taken in the first 24 hours of the Biden Administration that increases our dependence on foreign oil and harms American sovereignty. Oil and gas play an important role in our nation’s energy independence – by blocking leasing and drilling permits, President Biden is putting our nation’s ability to control its economic and energy decision-marking in peril. It is clear we should have taken President Biden and Vice President Harris at their word when they threatened to harm America’s energy dominance on the campaign trail – in 24 hours, they’ve already taken dangerous steps in doing so.”
Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska): "It is not surprising, though no less disappointing, that President Biden is continuing Obama-era attacks against Alaska, and against energy projects across the country. By placing a moratorium on energy projects on federal land, President Biden has surrendered to his party's environmental extremists at the cost of good-paying jobs. I want the President to know this: in my state, we have shown for decades that energy development and environmental protection can go hand in hand. These actions serve only to hinder our economy, stifle energy independence, and in many ways are a gift to adversaries like Russia, China, and Venezuela. I call on President Biden to recognize that if the United States is not producing energy, hostile countries with far lower environmental standards will fill the void. For the sake of national security and economic growth, I call on President Biden to reverse this disastrous moratorium.”
Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas): “This decision, like other parts of the Biden administration’s radical climate agenda, is a direct assault on American livelihoods. Producing energy on public lands provides communities across the country with good jobs, tax revenue, and even directly funds the maintenance of the parks and lands the Department of Interior is charged with managing. All this will really do is raise the cost of living for hardworking Americans and strengthen energy-producing adversaries like China and Russia.”
Rep. Dan. Crenshaw (R-Texas): “An all out assault on American energy independence appears to be the top priority of the Biden Administration. From rejoining Paris to canceling Keystone and now this ban on drilling on federal land, it’s clear the campaign trail rhetoric of banning oil and gas is turning into actual policy in the Biden-Harris White House. The administration is already off to a bad start, putting the priorities of their radical base ahead of American energy workers and our economy.”
Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio): “In order to reduce our country’s reliance on foreign sources of energy, we need to be able to access and utilize resources here, at home. Securing America’s energy future includes ensuring we are supporting innovation and creating more high-quality American jobs. This announcement threatens all of that and is a huge step backwards. This significant change will cost American jobs and make it increasingly difficult for us to meet demand with our own energy sources and solutions, forcing us to rely on other countries’ natural resources. Instead, we should be working together to maintain and increase our global leadership in energy creation and distribution.”
Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio): "Is this just the start of an anti-energy agenda that will kill more jobs, increase the cost of living, and limit opportunities for the American people? Unfortunately, probably yes. It is, after all, what President Joe Biden promised to do."
Rep. Tim Burchett (R-Tenn.): “This is a bad decision for America’s energy independence. The Biden administration already closed down the Keystone XL Pipeline, now they’re prohibiting energy production on federal lands. We’re starting to see a pattern, and it’s going to significantly cut our domestic energy production.”
Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Texas): “Joe Biden promised to continue drilling and fracking. This reversal is a slap in the face to America’s energy workers.”
Rep. August Pfluger (R-Texas): "President Biden is wasting no time pandering to his illogical base and devastating American energy dominance and oil and gas jobs in the process. Shutting down over 10% of our nation's energy production with the stroke of a pen is gross executive overreach and demonstrates that the Biden administration is more committed to radical Green New Deal policies than national security."
Rep. Carol Miller (R-W.Va.): “Over the past 4 years, America has taken important steps towards securing energy independence. The actions taken on the first day of the Biden Administration are alarming. Decreasing our nation’s ability to produce clean, reliable energy requires America and our allies to become reliant on the imports from the Middle East and Russia. We must find innovative ways to keep our energy industry strong, maintain our national security, and keep hard-working Americans employed.”
Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Ga.): “We have spent decades working to establish American energy independence. This decision by the Biden Administration would hit the brakes on the progress that has been made and will only push American dependence on to foreign recourses. It’s irresponsible to move backwards and it threatens American jobs.”
Rep. Roger Williams (R-Texas): "We are just two days into the Biden Administration, and his position on U.S. energy is already abundantly clear; make America dependent on foreign energy again. The President’s executive actions will have a devastating impact on American oil and gas producers, and make them less competitive around the globe. I urge President Biden to immediately reverse course and not to succumb to the far left of the Democratic party, risking Texas jobs and an irreplicable sector of our economy. The U.S. maintaining energy independence is in our utmost economic and national security interests."
Rep. Tom Reed (R-N.Y.): “Punitive executive orders against the American energy industry unfairly hurt our economy and compromise our energy security. Instead of focusing on political appeasement, the administration should work with Congress on substantive energy legislation that supports an all-of-the-above energy and climate agenda.”
Rep. Rick Allen (R-Ga.): “The Biden Administration’s harmful decision to block drilling on public lands will roll back progress made toward energy independence and force us to import more foreign oil. At a time when we should be laser-focused on rebuilding our nation’s economy, this misguided action will only stifle growth.”
Rep. Kevin Hern (R-Okla.): “After preaching unity to the nation just yesterday, Joe Biden started his presidency by taking aim at the energy sector. He is deliberately dismantling our domestic oil production to the detriment of millions of Americans who work in our energy sector. 2020 was the first year in memory that we were net exporters of crude oil, thanks to the aggressive goals of the Trump Administration. Now, Biden aims to destroy the progress we made over the last four years and ensure that America will never be energy-independent. I fear that the decisions made in the first 24 hours of the Biden presidency indicate a hostile future for the American energy sector.”
Rep. Ron Estes (R-Kan.): “For the first time in 70 years, the United States is now a net energy exporter, lessening our dependence on foreign entities and creating critical jobs in Kansas and throughout the country. The reckless decision to pull back on our energy independence will negatively affect families and kill jobs during a pandemic.”
Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.): "President Biden is weaponizing the federal government against American energy producers. The Biden moratorium will destroy thousands of oil and gas jobs, raise energy costs, and increase reliance on foreign energy. We went from a President who put America first to a President who puts America last. Further, sending oil and gas production overseas to nations with horrible ecological records is the worst thing we can do for the environment. It’s not just bad for America, it’s bad for the world.”
Rep. Fred Keller (R-Pa.): “Instead of prioritizing policies that will help Americans get through this pandemic, the Biden Administration has spent its first 48 hours taking aim at America’s energy industry. This latest action to block domestic energy production is an affront to the thousands of American workers who rely on this industry for their livelihoods. At this critical juncture in our economic recovery, the Biden Administration’s focus on dismantling the gains made over the past four years is counterproductive to America’s needs.”
Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas): "Biden is wasting no time on his commitment to destroy the oil and gas industry. His Interior Department’s temporary ban against drilling on federal lands will only increase our reliance on foreign countries for energy, cause devastating fiscal and economic losses, and jeopardize our national security. I urge President Biden to lift this moratorium immediately before the effects become irreversible."
Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-N.D.): “Energy production on federal lands in North Dakota supports thousands of jobs and provides millions of dollars for our schools, hospitals, roads, and conservation. This misguided effort will crush a critical segment of our country’s economy, increase reliance on foreign energy, and weaken our national security. I call on the Biden Administration to support responsible energy development on our public lands."
Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R-Minn.): “President Biden, not even 48 hours into his term, is severely damaging U.S. energy independence, giving ‘pink slips’ to thousands of high-wage energy workers and significantly slowing our economic recovery through overreaching, leftwing, anti-energy executive actions. Biden and Democrats in Congress are showing their agenda of environmental extremism by imposing a radical oil and gas drilling moratorium that was first proposed by Elizabeth Warren. Decisions of this nature, which affect our nation’s security, the economy and the livelihoods of millions of Americans, should be made by Congress – not one politician in Washington acting upon knee-jerk liberal impulses.”
Rep. Pete Stauber (R-Minn.): “Banning oil and gas development on public lands hurts northern Minnesota families. This shortsighted ban will only drive up the cost of fuel, empower our foreign adversaries, and put Americans out of work. This is nothing short of another assault by Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Green New Deal advocates on working families. Limiting our domestic development of our natural resources limits our nation.”
Rep. Steve Womack (R-Ark.): “Restricting development on federal lands on top of sidelining the Keystone Pipeline shows a blind prioritization of so-called ‘climate credibility’ over reason. These shortsighted decisions will kill thousands of jobs, drive up energy costs at a time when Americans are already struggling, and restrict our energy independence. We need to be focused on an all-of-the-above energy approach, not unrealistic standards that leave us choosing between California’s rolling blackouts or enriching foreign adversaries.”
Rep. John Joyce, M.D. (R-Pa.): “As evidenced by the Interior Department’s fracking moratorium, the Biden-Harris Administration intends to kill family-sustaining jobs, end America’s energy independence, raise utility prices for American families, and renew our energy reliance on foreign nations with its radical energy agenda. This divisive and reckless measure will have far-reaching ramifications for hardworking families in Pennsylvania and around the country. When President Biden promised ‘no new fracking’ on the campaign trial, the American people should have taken him at his word.”
Rep. Greg Pence (R-Ind.): “The Trump-Pence Administration prioritized America’s energy independence and put American energy and oil workers first. One day into his presidency, President Biden has banned new oil and gas permitting on public lands, killing American jobs and pumping the brakes on our economic recovery. Energy demand will continue in our nation, but with President Biden’s new ban we will depend on foreign adversaries instead of ourselves.”
Rep. Dan Meuser (R-Pa.): "President Biden's efforts to restrict natural gas and oil development on federal lands will do nothing but reverse the progress domestic energy producers have made in recent years and make the U.S. more reliant on foreign sources. A shift to unregulated foreign imports will hinder the environmental advancements being made here in the U.S. and puts our nation's energy security at risk. This policy will be devastating to local communities, increase consumer prices, and cost the U.S. nearly one million American jobs."
Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.): “I am furious that President Biden implemented a moratorium on oil and gas drilling – an industry that employs thousands of hardworking Pennsylvanians. Just like we repeatedly said he would, President Biden caved to progressives’ radical demands on his first full day in office. His drilling moratorium will kill family-sustaining jobs, raise energy prices for everyday Americans, and empower our foreign adversaries by forcing us to rely on hostile countries for our energy needs. Combined with canceling the Keystone XL pipeline, President Biden’s early actions prove he cares more about appeasing angry liberals than protecting good-paying jobs in southwestern Pennsylvania and around the country. For the sake of the hardworking, often union households in southwestern Pennsylvania, I hope the Biden Administration will reconsider this shortsighted, dangerous policy.”
Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.): “Banning responsible energy development will further push the U.S. toward foreign oil and destroy American jobs. Period. This decision is bad for North Carolina and bad for the country. As a member of the House Energy Action Team, I’m ready to work with my colleagues and this Administration to address America’s energy challenges, but handicapping American energy will only serve to further hurt local communities and slow economic recovery.”