Washington, DC – The White House today announced a pause on all liquified natural gas (LNG) export approvals by the US Department of Energy. They are beginning a long-overdue process for incorporating climate and environmental harm into their analysis of these projects. The 17 proposed LNG export projects have seen widespread opposition from frontline and environmental groups, as LNG releases methane, which has nearly an 80 times higher warming capacity than carbon in its first 20 years in the atmosphere.
US oil and gas CEOs have been exporting record amounts of LNG overseas, and the US government has tried to use international energy needs to justify expanding LNG exports. Yet earlier this week, 60 EU lawmakers told Biden that they don’t need more US liquified natural gas and he shouldn’t use them as an excuse to expand exportation. This news comes just one week after the Americas Energy Summit, an LNG convening to promote energy sources backed by the fossil fuel industry, and six weeks after COP28.
Candice Fortin, 350.org US Campaign Manager, responds:
“This is a major step in the right direction, and a huge win for the climate movement and our frontline partners in the Gulf. We trust that when the government reviews the climate and environmental justice harms, they will fully reject all LNG export projects, because anything less would reveal this pause to be nothing more than a strategic and self-serving PR campaign. The harmful effects of fracked gas on health and climate are not in question. Both frontline communities and scientific data have been communicating these clearly for decades, and there is much harm that cannot be undone. But the US government has finally taken a major step towards the side of the people instead of industry profit. That is both historic, and it shouldn’t need to be. We celebrate this move in the direction of justice and look forward to celebrating it growing.”
Melanie Smith / [email protected]