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Politics Republicans blame Biden climate agenda for gas shortages

02:20  13 may  2021
02:20  13 may  2021 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

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Republican politicians are linking this week’s gasoline shortages and price spikes to President Joe Biden’s moves to curb fossil fuel use as part of his aggressive climate agenda.

a car parked in a parking lot © Provided by Washington Examiner

“The Colonial Pipeline crisis shows that we need more American energy to fuel our economy, not less,” said House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy of California in a tweet Tuesday. “But the Biden Administration has already canceled the Keystone Pipeline and paused oil and gas drilling, leaving our energy supply more vulnerable to attacks.”

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The Republicans launched the political attack after the Colonial Pipeline was shut down by ransomware.

The 2,000-mile Keystone XL pipeline, though, would have transported crude oil from Alberta in western Canada to the Gulf Coast of Texas, where it would be refined, not fuel products such as gasoline that the 5,500-mile Colonial Pipeline transports across the East Coast. In total, the Colonial Pipeline is responsible for nearly half of the East Coast’s fuel supply.

“In this case, this was an issue about how a cyberattack impacted a pipeline that’s there. I’m not sure it really speaks to the number or quantity of pipelines or their throughput,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said during a White House press briefing Wednesday, when asked if the fuel shortages signal the United States should be building more pipelines.

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“I do think it reminds us that we need to make sure that we have the most resilient and flexible infrastructure for the future, especially when it comes to something like energy,” Buttigieg added.

Nonetheless, as people in Southeastern states found themselves waiting in long lines for gasoline and coming up empty at many stations, Republicans have suggested that Biden’s climate policies would leave the U.S. with less domestic fuel and higher energy prices.

Gasoline prices surpassed $3 per gallon Wednesday for the first time since 2014, in large part due to spiking demand as people raced to fill up at the pumps.

“Welcome to the Green New Deal,” Texas Sen. Ted Cruz tweeted Wednesday, pointing to gas outages piling up in Southeastern states. As of Wednesday afternoon, nearly two-thirds of gas stations in North Carolina were without fuel, as well as at least 40% of the gas stations in Georgia, South Carolina, and Virginia.

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“We knew this would happen when President Biden cancelled the Keystone XL Pipeline and reversed our America-first energy policies,” South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem said in a tweet Wednesday. South Dakota hasn’t been affected by the Colonial Pipeline shutdown, but the Keystone XL crude oil pipeline would have cut through the state on its way down to the Gulf Coast.

Several Republicans are also latching on to a remark made by Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm during the White House briefing Tuesday that “pipeline is the best way to go” to transport oil and gas fuels.

“It shouldn’t take a hack/shutdown for this admin to recognize the importance of modern infrastructure like #KeystoneXL to ensure U.S. energy security,” said Sen. John Thune of South Dakota in a tweet citing Granholm’s comment.

Republican politicians are also lamenting stalled pipeline projects, such as the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines, that haven’t moved forward due to legal challenges from environmental groups that have driven up the cost of construction.

Conservatives seize on gas crunch to blame Biden, stir base

  Conservatives seize on gas crunch to blame Biden, stir base A graphic calling the East Coast fuel supply crunch “Biden’s Gas Crisis.” A tweet speculating that gas stations running dry was an “INSIDE JOB.” A meme depicting the president and vice president cheering about the “Green New Deal” in front of a snaking line at a fuel station. These and thousands of other social media posts along with conservative websites and commentators this week misleadingly painted President Joe Biden and his administration as catalysts of chaos — who not only mishandled the temporary shutdown of the nation’s largest fuel pipeline on Friday — but engineered it.

“What’s needed are policy changes that allow more permitting, and more timely permitting, across the country to ensure redundancy in the system,” Dan Brouillette, who led the Energy Department under former President Donald Trump, told the Washington Examiner.

“The regulatory and legal environment is too uncertain,” Brouillette added. “The Atlantic Coast pipeline couldn’t be built even after spending billions of dollars on regulatory proceedings and winning a Supreme Court case.”

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Top Republicans on the House Transportation Committee Rep. Sam Graves of Missouri and Rick Crawford of Arkansas said the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines would have “created a significantly greater capability to respond to this cyberattack.”

Those pipelines, however, would have transported natural gas rather than petroleum fuels like the Colonial Pipeline.

With assistance from Josh Siegel.

Tags: News, Energy and Environment, Colonial Pipeline, Climate Change, Biden Administration, Oil, Pipelines, Keystone XL, Jennifer Granholm, Pete Buttigieg

Original Author: Abby Smith

Original Location: Republicans blame Biden climate agenda for gas shortages

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usr: 6
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