President Joe Biden said his administration hasn’t prevented domestic energy production, even after more than a year of pushing policies designed to phase out fossil fuels.
“It is simply not true that my administration or policies are holding back domestic energy production,” Biden remarked at the White House on Tuesday. “That is simply not true.”
The president announced earlier in his speech that the U.S. would ban all oil imports from Russia in response to the nation’s invasion of Ukraine. The U.S. imported more than 670,000 barrels of oil per day from Russia in 2021, government data showed.
Biden said that energy companies have increased energy production during his tenure. However, the Energy Information Administration, which tracks global energy markets, forecasted on Feb. 18 that the U.S. would again become a net importer of oil in 2022.
More, fossil fuel industry groups have urged the Biden administration to reverse its energy policies and prioritize domestic production of oil and natural gas in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Both Republicans and Democrats have urged the president to open up avenues of domestic energy production amid the Ukraine crisis, which has roiled global oil markets.
“The United States has shown its global energy dominance over the past decade. Unfortunately, this has been threatened by the current Administration’s policies against domestic natural gas and oil production,” Independent Petroleum Association of America COO Jeff Eshelman told the Daily Caller News Foundation in early March.
Since taking office, President Joe Biden has waged a war on fossil fuels, nixing the Keystone XL oil pipeline, ditching an oil drilling project in Alaska, introducing sweeping fossil fuel regulations and making it harder for utilities to gain approval for natural gas projects. His administration has also defied multiple court-ordered deadlines to restart the federal oil and gas leasing program after Biden attempted to halt the program altogether.
“We share the goal of reducing reliance on foreign energy sources and urge policymakers to advance American energy leadership and expand domestic production to counter Russia’s influence in global energy markets,” Mike Sommers, the president and chief executive of industry group the American Petroleum Institute, said in a statement.