American Petroleum Institute CEO Mike Sommers eviscerated the Biden administration for stealing America’s energy future, in more ways than one.
Sommers told CNBC anchor Andrew Ross Sorkin during the Jan. 29 edition of Squawk Box that President Joe Biden’s announcement to abruptly halt liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports was concerning. “As you know, investment goes where it's welcome, and unfortunately, the administration's decision, I think, is going to push investment away from the United States into other countries,” Sommers said. “This is a decision that's bad for consumers; it's bad for American national security and it's certainly bad for American allies.”
Sommers said the export of liquefied natural gas has helped lower the price of natural gas, further raising concerns that the Jan. 26 move to pause liquefied natural gas projects was a “political decision to appease a part of their political party's base in an election year.”
The American Petroleum Institute CEO listed several benefits ignored by the Biden administration such as American “soft power” in regions benefiting from U.S.-produced energy. He also mentioned that LNG lowers the prices Americans have to pay for energy.
When Sorkin tried to give Biden credit for American energy successes, Sommers quickly set him straight. Sommers made clear that American production succeeded “despite Biden administration policies,” but warned that this could not continue forever:
“We're going to go through a year, for example, this year in 2024, where we will have zero lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico. We're down in terms of leasing on federal lands by 96%. They've taken over 500,000 acres offline in the state of Alaska, the national petroleum refuge. Most of this new development is actually on private lands, not on public lands, and unfortunately, we still get 25% of American production on public lands and in public waters. So this administration continues to try to tap the brakes on American energy production at a time.”
Sommers hammered this point again in case his warning went unheeded. “We're sowing the seeds for an energy crisis in the future because we're not making those investments here in the United States,” Sommers mentioned, emphasizing that the United States is still benefiting from former energy projects.
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