In 2020, Joe Biden, the candidate for President, vowed to be TheThe United States has had the greenest president in its history. This was not a reference to Biden’s political maturing, but to Bidens superpowers. ambitiousClimate agenda.
Fast forward 15 years, and Biden, who is now facing an unprecedented energy crisis in America, is being accused of making a change on climate policy, veering towardsDrill, baby, drill To encourage more oil production in order to increase dwindling global supply
Promises made, (some) promises kept. Biden, who was focused on unifying the Democratic Party following his election, pledged to do great work on climate change mitigation. Biden immediately followed through with a series executive orders, the first of which was to reduce climate change. JoiningThe Paris Climate Accords, abandoned by his predecessor, re-align the US with nearly 200 nations that have agreed to cooperate on keeping the temperature below 2° Celsius.
Biden also dropped the Keystone XL Pipeline which would have pumped crude oil from Alberta, Canada to the Texas Gulf. Canadian PM Justin Trudeau was next door and had seen the signs but was still upset by the decision. Importantly, the decision was a win for the left flank of Democratic Party.
Biden also stated that there would be a presidency while he was running for the presidency no more drilling He used public lands to reduce fossil fuel extraction and reach his goal of halving carbon omissions by the end of the decade, from 2005 levels.
Enter Putin. Biden was already in a series of political crises before February 24, including COVID and the culture Wars, inflation, and immigration woes. His poll numbers are hurting. However, Putin then smashed Ukraine, sending the global oil industry into a tailspin. This further threatened Biden’s already-decreasing credibility at home.
Biden has tried to pin his inflationary woes onto the Kremlin since then, using the witty slogan Putin’s Price HikeRussian aggression is a likely reason for rising food and gas prices. Americans should remember that prices have been rising since last year and that many people aren’t buying it.
It is a desperate time. As oil and gas prices rise The surgeBiden is becoming more desperate flipped-floppedSome of his climate commitments. Importantly, his administration is opening federal lands across nine states to oil-and-gas drilling. This is the first such move since Biden was elected.
The president, who is in trouble, is trying to show working class Americans that he understands their economic pain. But there’s another core constituency. EnvironmentalistsMany of them reluctantly supported him, Biden’s recent move is nothing short a betrayal.
Biden has created a website to placate the grumbling greenies. UppedEnergy companies must pay royalties ranging from 12.5% up to 18.75% when drilling on these lands.
However, this strategy could prove to be self-destructive and demotivating. already-skeptical Energy companies are concerned about the impact of boosting production on market valuation and the cost of investment.
So will Biden’s ploy to move the needle? Shari Friedman, an expert at Eurasia Group, believes this was more of a political reaction than a positive one. She says it was intended to reduce anxiety and take action in the face rising gas prices.
Friedman says that in reality, there is little the Biden administration could do to reduce domestic energy costs in the near future.
Selling leases is one thing, but getting an oil-rig online takes time. Developers have huge reserves of both undeveloped and productive fossil-fuel leases. Any leases that are currently in existence today are unlikely to produce any oil for many years. Max Sarinsky is a senior attorney at the Institute for Policy Integrity in New York.
He adds that there is a lot of value in limiting fossil-fuel leasing and preserving the option of leasing or not leasing in the future.
Further complicating matters is the fact many of Biden’s climate policies are wrapped in the Create a Better Act to Rebuild the World , which is now dead in water because of Democratic Holdouts. Biden is unlikely to be able to make significant investments in emission reduction schemes anytime soon, even though it looks like a pipedream.
Meanwhile, some Democrats and special interests groups are giving the president a lot of attention because he hasn’t kept his promises to them. There was no other way to deal with the current energy crisis given the gravity of it.
Clayton Allen, Eurasia Group analyst, says that although I don’t think this was necessarily inevitable, it is the logical consequence of where we find ourselves.
The West’s response to Russia’s aggression has also played a part. Allen claims that the West’s willingness to respond strongly to Russia’s aggression has increased the oil supply disruptions resulting from the war. He also says that markets are facing an increasing pinch as a result.
When faced with new realities, politicians are known to backtrack. Biden, however, heads a very unwieldy Democratic Party. The problem is that the people who he needs to support him want very different things.