President Joe Biden’s latest policy push has us doing not just a double take but a triple take: The man who’s put roadblock after roadblock in the way of North American energy companies in pursuit of his vow to decarbonize the US economy is . . . begging OPEC to boost fossil-fuel production.
Why? The prez complains the high price of gas is hurting the post-pandemic economic recovery. Seriously.
“OPEC+ must do more to support the recovery,” National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan declared Wednesday, and his boss backed him up. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies cut 10 million barrels a day — 10 percent of global demand — at the pandemic’s start as demand dried up. It’s since raised output by about 4.2 million barrels a day and promises to add another 400,000 barrels a day until it’s back to pre-COVID levels.
“Simply not enough,” says Sullivan, as Biden “has made clear that he wants Americans to have access to affordable and reliable energy, including at the pump.”
That’s news to us. On his very first day in office, Biden killed the Keystone XL pipeline, which would have brought 830,000 barrels of Canadian oil a day down south — and thousands of good-paying jobs with it. In March, he put a moratorium on oil leasing on federal land, which a judge later found to be illegal. Later, he canceled Trump-era oil leases in Alaska.
Biden has made combating climate change a top priority — and declared war on the American energy industry to do it.
But somehow foreign carbon fuels get exempted. He waived sanctions on Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline that aims to get gas to Germany. And now he’s pushing Saudi Arabia and other less-than-democratic countries to pump — even as his team confesses it isn’t making the same ask of domestic producers — because gas is at $3.18 a gallon, up more than $1 over last year. Do the added emissions from tankers shipping oil here not count?
An energy-independent America can make better foreign-policy decisions, particularly in the Middle East. Under President Donald Trump, the nation was becoming the world’s top energy producer. But Biden, keen to appease environmentalists at home, would rather gut the American industry, make the country reliant on foreign oil and tie his own diplomatic hands. It’s the perfect picture of cognitive dissonance.