In what is being touted as “the biggest check any president has ever applied to the fossil fuel industry, and the strongest move against dirty energy in American history,” the White House this morning announced the halt of licensing new Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) terminals until more research is conducted on their environmental impact.
“The pledge to “transition away from fossil fuels” that John Kerry and the rest of the world’s governments signed in Dubai was given actual meaning by Biden’s move,” writes Bill McKibben. “He’s thrown down the gauntlet to other world leaders: the world’s biggest hydrocarbon producer has said we’ve reached a limit.”
The ruling, which impacts four of the 17 LNG terminals in the United States, sidesteps the catastrophic finding that cumulatively, were these terminals to be built, their carbon footprint would be larger than that of the European Union. It comes at a time when LNG shipments to Asia and Europe have risen substantially since the Ukraine war.
“While MAGA Republicans willfully deny the urgency of the climate crisis, condemning the American people to a dangerous future, my administration will not be complacent,'' Biden said in a statement Friday. “We will not cede to special interests. We will heed the calls of young people and frontline communities who are using their voices to demand action from those with the power to act.''
"During this period, we will take a hard look at the impacts of LNG exports on energy costs, America's energy security, and our environment," he said, noting the pause "sees the climate crisis for what it is: the existential threat of our time."
Climate activists have been focusing on the huge LNG project in Louisiana, the Venture Global's Calcasieu Pass 2 (CP2), which will be paused due to this ruling.
McKibben writes that the ruling establishes a climate test for future plans to expand fossil fuels.
“The days of thinking of natural gas as a “bridge fuel” are waning—this fight has brought the science (particular thanks here to Cornell’s Bob Howarth) out into the open, and we now understand it’s a bridge to nowhere. Since natural gas has been the Democratic vice (coal is the Republican kink), it took Biden to really drive this point home. And it’s huge!”
EPA environmental consultant and former climate policy adviser touted Biden's decision as a “game-changer” in tackling the climate crisis.
“The president is drawing a line in the sand to put the nation's interests first and listen to climate science,'' Symons said in an interview
. ”The days of massive fossil fuel projects like the CP2 project escaping scrutiny from the federal government are over. We now have a president who cares about climate change.''
Symons and other activists have targeted the $10 billion Calcasieu Pass 2 project, or CP2, along Louisiana's Gulf Coast, noting it would be the nation's largest export terminal if built. The project in Cameron Parish would export up to 20 million tons (18.1 million metric tons) of chilled natural gas per year, creating more greenhouse gas emissions than even the Willow project, which environmentalists have decried as a "carbon bomb.'' www.msn.com/...