Biden energy restrictions would mean 1M jobs lost, more foreign oil imports, trade group warns

Banning natural gas and oil development on public lands and waters would cost Americans approximately 1 million jobs by 2022 and force the U.S. to import significantly more foreign oil, a top oil and natural gas industry group claimed in a new analysis on Wednesday.

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s climate plan includes “banning new oil and gas permitting on public lands and waters” in favor of renewables like wind power.

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Mike Sommers, the president and CEO of the American Petroleum Institute, said there is “far too much at stake” for a federal leasing ban.

“Banning federal leasing and development on federal lands and waters would derail decades of U.S. energy progress and return us to the days of relying on foreign energy sources hostile to American interests,” Sommers said in a statement.

His group claims that U.S. oil imports from foreign sources could jump by 2 million barrels a day by 2030 if such policies are enacted.

A federal leasing ban would also cost nearly one million jobs by 2022, including 120,000 in Texas, 62,000 in New Mexico and 33,000 in Wyoming, according to the American Petroleum Institute’s analysis.

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Biden’s critics said he flip-flopped on fracking in August after his campaign insisted he only supports halting permits for oil and gas exploration, including fracking, on federal land.

In a July 2019 debate, Biden answered “No” when asked by CNN’s Dana Bash: “Would there be any place for fossil fuels, including coal and fracking, in a Biden administration?”

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“We would work it out. We would make sure it’s eliminated and no more subsidies for either one of those, either – any fossil fuel,” Biden said.

Fox News’ Charles Creitz contributed to this report.

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