WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - President Biden is following through on campaign promises and targeting climate change by signing a series of executive orders, which include a pause on new oil and gas leases on federal lands and waters.
Texas Rep. August Pfluger (R-TX) claims the first week of the Biden Administration has been detrimental to hard-working Texans.
“This is going to hit people, our lowest wage earners the hardest, the folks that are out there every single day,” said Rep. August Pfluger (R-TX).
He said President Biden’s order could kill thousands of jobs. As for Texas, industry experts say offshore oil production in the Gulf of Mexico would be hit the hardest by the new policy. According to Texas General Land Office, more than 30 percent of Texas’ Permian Basin sits on federal land. With a much higher percentage of public land in neighboring New Mexico, Biden’s executive order would stop future gas and oil leases there too.
“The stakes are incredibly high for states like Texas,” said Mike Sommers, CEO of the American Petroleum Institute.
Sommers said Americans may not feel an immediate hit to their wallet, but he predicts these early policies could spell trouble down the road.
“A tremendous effect particularly on American consumers who would see energy prices rise and would also see us become dependent again on foreign sources of energy,” he said.
A study by the Institute concluded a federal leasing ban would result in one million jobs lost by 2022. The study also forecasts residential customers in the U.S. would pay 19 million more dollars for energy by 2030.
President Biden says his actions are aimed at stopping reliance on fossil fuels and transitioning to cleaner energy options like wind and solar that will produce millions of jobs with benefits. The Center for Western Priorities’ Deputy Director Aaron Weiss applauds the administration’s steps towards protecting land, water and wildlife.
“It’s a downpayment on President Biden’s campaign promises,” Weiss said. “You cannot address climate change in America without starting on our public lands.”
Weiss says he expects Congress and the Department of Interior to carry out Biden’s new policies over the next two years.
Biden also created a Civilian Climate Corps to hire Americans to conserve public lands and waters and protect biodiversity.