Leaders on Biden-⁠Harris Pause on Pending Decisions of LNG Exports

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(The White House, 27.Jan.2024) — This week, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a temporary pause on pending decisions for exports of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). During this period, the Department of Energy will evaluate the impacts of LNG exports on energy costs, America’s energy security, and climate change – the existential threat of our time.

Since day one, President Biden has led and delivered on the most ambitious climate agenda in history. The Biden-Harris Administration will continue to lead the way on unprecedented climate action while ensuring the American economy remains the envy of the world.

Leaders from across the country praised the announcement. Here is what they are saying:

Climate and Environmental Justice Leaders

Ben Jealous, Executive Director, Sierra Club: “President Biden and Secretary Granholm’s bold step today continues this administration’s historic efforts to meet the global commitment to phase out fossil fuels and confront the climate crisis head on. This decision is a major win for communities and advocates that have long spoken out about the dangers of LNG, and makes it clear that the Biden administration is listening to the calls to break America’s reliance on dirty fossil fuels and secure a livable future for us all. Strong leadership, that rejects fossil fuel industry fear mongering, is our best bet to protect communities and ensure energy is affordable. It’s undeniable that LNG export projects are simply not in the public interest and we are confident that if this review is done right, that would end the rubber-stamping of these projects. The Biden administration is making the right choice on behalf of the planet, our communities, and our national security.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Sierra Club: “HUGE NEWS! @POTUS @SecGranholm have taken bold and historic action to #StopLNG” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Margie Alt, Director, Climate Action Campaign: “President Biden met this moment on climate, delivering on his promise to slash climate pollution and take measurable steps to protect our environment and future. If the reports are true, this decision to pause the permitting for a massive extracted gas export facility to require the consideration of its climate impacts is exactly the kind of leadership we need from President Biden. Burning more extracted gas makes climate change worse and intensifies extreme weather disasters. Standing up to big polluters and putting people before profits, is what the president promised and what the president is delivering.” [Statement, 1/24/24]

Former Vice President Al Gore, Founder, The Climate Reality Project: “World leaders agreed to transition away from fossil fuels at the COP28 climate negotiations last year and President Biden’s decision today to pause new permits for LNG exports shows that he is taking that pledge seriously. If we want to enhance energy security, create jobs, and prevent environmental injustice, we should be making investments in cheaper, readily available renewable energy, not dirty and damaging fossil fuels.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Manish Bapna, President and CEO, Natural Resources Defense Council: “This is the right call. The stakes could not be higher – for the climate, U.S. leadership and our future. The administration needs to pause and get the facts. These are dangerous projects that would lock in decades more dependence on the fossil fuels driving us toward climate catastrophe.

“Let’s be clear about the public interest. It’s time to phase out fossil fuels. That’s what the United States and 197 other countries agreed to do last month in Dubai. That’s what the science demands. Vast industrial projects to export these dirty and dangerous fuels far into the future have no place in a climate-safe world […] What’s needed is a pause, so the administration can sharpen its tools. We need an open and transparent process for determining how best to assess these critical concerns. The public deserves to be heard on how our government decides whether projects are in the public interest.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Natural Resources Defense Council: “As the Biden administration decides the future of massive new projects that would expand future exports of liquified natural gas, it is pausing a huge swath of new export permits. It’s a key step toward phasing out the fossil fuels powering climate change + polluting communities.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Gene Karpinski, President, League of Conservation Voters: “This is huge. The Biden-Harris administration’s decision to take a deeper look at all the impacts of LNG exports is a major step forward towards protecting our families, our communities, and our climate,” said LCV President Gene Karpinski. “This decision sends a clear signal that the administration is taking the global commitment reached in December to transition away from fossil fuels seriously. No president has done more on climate, from day one executive orders to the historic investments in the Inflation Reduction Act to today’s announcement, President Biden is slashing climate pollution, increasing affordable, renewable energy, and transitioning away from fossil fuels.

Exporting LNG is harmful to our environment, our economy, and our communities. Continuing to allow the massive expansion of this industry would mean even more toxic pollution and higher energy bills for communities across the country who are already overburdened by pollution and energy costs, and would make it nearly impossible for the world to reach its climate goals. Meanwhile Big Oil is willing to say and spend anything to pad their already record profits. Our future must be powered by clean energy, not the polluting, volatile, and unreliable fossil fuels of the past.” [Press release, 1/26/24]

League of Conservation Voters: “🚨 BREAKING: @POTUS is freezing CP2 development and delaying approval of new LNG export facilities. This is the most significant action taken by a president to curb fossil fuel expansion. This is a huge win for our planet and people and big defeat for Big Oil! #StopLNG #StopCP2” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Elida Castillo, Program Director, Chispa Texas: “We thank the Biden-Harris administration for listening to our communities experiencing the devastating impacts of massive oil and gas exports firsthand. This is a hopeful and critical step forward to prioritize people over polluters for our future generations and our communities along the Gulf coast. After record-breaking heat across the country last year, this major action is crucial to combat the climate crisis and environmental injustice, especially for our communities most harmed by toxic pollution from oil and gas extraction. For too long, Big Polluters have been allowed to export more fossil fuels year after year regardless of the cost to communities who are living with even more consequences from toxic pollution, consumers across the country already facing higher costs and unreliable energy sources, and more impacted communities by our reliance on fossil fuels. Despite what Big Oil wants us to believe, renewables are bringing down the energy costs for everyone. This is the path to a more sustainable and equitable clean energy future that stabilizes our economy and supports our domestic energy security.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Abigail Dillen, President, Earthjustice: “We applaud the Biden administration for taking this tremendously important step to align its decision-making on gas exports with U.S. climate goals. As communities across the country face the devastating impacts of the climate crisis and fossil fuel pollution, it’s never been clearer that rubber-stamping LNG exports is not in the public interest. We look forward to working with the Department of Energy to make sure that the environmental and economic risks of LNG exports are fully accounted for when it makes public interest determinations.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Earthjustice: “BREAKING: @ENERGY has announced that it will pause export license approvals of liquified gas exports. LNG exports not only pollute communities and drive us deeper into the climate crisis, they also raise energy prices for families.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Dr. Leah Stokes, Climate and Energy Policy Professor, University of California, Santa Barbara: “Huge news! The White House is delaying the approval of a massive LNG terminal and evaluating the others based on the latest climate science. This is a massive win for people and the planet. Great decision from President Biden!” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Dr. Genevieve Guenther, Founding Director, End Climate Silence: Oh my god, I am literally in tears right now. Biden is pausing approvals and directing the DOE to expand its evaluation of new liquid methane gas terminals to consider their impact on #ClimateChange. Thank god, thank god.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Ben Cushing, Fossil-Free Finance Campaign Director, SierraClub: “In the words of

@JoeBiden, this is a BFD! I can’t think of a bigger action—or a better statement—that a US President has ever done on the root of the climate crisis: fossil fuel expansion. Thank you @POTUS & the tireless movement that made this happen.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Laura Jay, North America Regional Director, C40 Cities: “The devastating impacts of climate breakdown are here. Urban residents, and particularly frontline communities, are experiencing the harmful consequences of fossil fuel pollution, from extreme heat and storms to rising energy costs, every day. At COP28, C40 mayors called on national governments to rapidly phase out the use of fossil fuels. In the final agreement, countries agreed to ‘transition away’ from fossil fuels. Today’s action gives life to that promise.

The decision by the Biden Administration today to pause new LNG export facilities is a welcome and necessary recognition of the urgent need to protect the health, safety, and economic well-being of our communities by shifting to a clean energy future. It is a critical step in the global phase-out of fossil fuels and will accelerate the clean energy market both in the United States and around the world.” [Statement, 1/26/2024]

Lori Lodes, Executive Director, Climate Power: “President Biden has done more to protect our planet and build a booming clean energy economy that ends our reliance on dirty fossil fuels than any other president in history. The president’s action today is a historic move to protect the health and economic security of our nation from corporate polluters and address the global threat of a very real climate crisis. Make no mistake, if it were up to Donald Trump, these dangerous oil and gas projects would be rushed forward — exporting fossil fuels overseas, increasing our energy costs, and spewing toxic pollution. At every turn, MAGA Republicans are working to tie America’s future to costly, dangerous and dirty fossil fuels – no matter the price.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Alex Wall, Senior Advisor, Climate Power: “​​This is HUGE. @POTUS just diffused a carbon bomb and took HISTORIC climate action to halt the approval of dangerous methane gas export facilities. Adding to the most any president has EVER done to fight the climate crisis.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director, Food & Water Watch: “Given the massive volume of LNG currently being exported, and the numerous additional projects already approved and set to come online in coming years, anything less than a permanent halt to further expansion of this deadly industry is unacceptable. Hopefully this pause represents the beginning of the end of fossil fuel exports in America.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

WeAct for Environmental Justice: “This necessary and crucial reevaluation on Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminals with a focus on DOE’s public interest determination is a step in the right direction, and we hope that this gives the Administration the space to partner with advocates to fully analyze the impact of the U.S. LNG policy on communities that are burdened with fossil fuel infrastructure and pollution. WE ACT was one of the first environmental justice groups to call for a pause on LNG projects and for the Administration to broaden the scope of the public interest reviews to address cumulative impacts. We have been strong on this front sharing our concerns and expertise with federal agencies, submitting comments, and standing with frontline heroes to make a day like today possible. We are thankful for the coalition of proactive frontline leadership and partnership on the Hill to sound the alarm on this issue..” [Press Release, 1/26/2024]

Roishetta Ozane, Director and Founder, The Vessel Project (Louisiana): “This announcement from the Biden Administration is truly monumental for our communities. As someone who has witnessed the devastating impacts of fossil fuel extractive industries, I am filled with hope and gratitude for this important step towards justice. Halting permits for these industries is a clear acknowledgment of the urgent need to protect the well-being and rights of those of us who have been disproportionately affected. It is a powerful statement that we can no longer allow these industries to continue operating without considering the health and safety of the people living in these areas. However, it is crucial to remember that this is just the beginning of a long journey.

While this decision is a significant victory, we must not become complacent. The fight for environmental justice and the elimination of fossil fuel extractive industries must continue. We must remain vigilant and continue to advocate for sustainable alternatives. We cannot afford to let up in our efforts to hold decision-makers accountable and ensure that frontline communities are no longer subjected to the harmful effects of these industries. This announcement is a reason to celebrate, but it is also a reminder that our work is far from over.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Roishetta Ozane, Founder and Founder, The Vessel Project (Louisiana): “Thank you @ENERGY @SecGranholm @POTUS for listening to us. This has been a tireless fight. And we know it’s not over. There is so much work to be done. But this is a monumental start.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Anne Rolfes, Director, Louisiana Bucket Brigade: “The fishermen of south Louisiana are facing extinction from the gas export industry. We are happy about the reported pause. Gas exports from the coast of Louisiana are disastrous for our fishermen, our country and our climate.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Ebony Twilley-Martin, Executive Director, Greenpeace USA: “Today, we celebrate an incredible win that rests squarely in the hands of people living on the frontlines, who have been fighting this nightmare tirelessly for years. With this delay, President Biden is demonstrating that the United States can and will transition away from dirty oil and gas. It’s a remarkable step that defines the stakes in the upcoming election.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Carmen Gravatt, International Program Director, Greenpeace International: “We’re pleased to see the U.S. give a lifeline to the climate by making this sensible decision to halt all new LNG export project approvals, which will affect infrastructure projects like the CP2 carbon bomb. If the US is serious about honoring its commitments under the Paris agreement, this pause needs to become permanent. Global climate bodies have long been warning us that if we want to achieve net zero by 2050 and secure a peaceful and livable planet we must stop new oil and gas. Despite what the industry might have you believe, LNG is dirty polluting fossil fuel that is contributing to the climate emergency – our biggest existential threat – and it needs to be stopped. LNG is not a transition fuel, and the US does not need new gas production facilities, LNG terminals and exports, and importing geographies like the EU don’t need its gas. The best way to secure a safe global energy system, and avert the climate crisis, is to supercharge the rollout of renewables like solar and wind and increase efforts at demand reduction and energy efficiency.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Lauren Parker, Attorney, Center for Biological Diversity: “Tapping the brakes on CP2 is the best signal yet that the Biden administration is ready to put people and the planet over fossil fuel profiteers. This is a crucial moment to protect future generations by halting the biggest fossil fuel expansion on Earth. Now that the administration is listening to frontline communities, youth and climate advocates fighting for a livable planet, it needs to go all in on phasing out fossil fuels. We need a public interest test that denies any fossil fuel expansion that would drive us deeper into climate catastrophe and violate U.S. commitments to transition away from fossil fuels.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Jamie Henn, Fossil Free Media: “IT’S OFFICIAL: The White House just announced that Department of Energy is pausing all new LNG export terminals!! This halts nearly 20 LNG terminals representing 675 coal fired power plants worth of emissions.  It’s a historic day in the fight against fossil fuels.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Rachel Kyte, CEO, Sustainable Energy For All: “The U.S. is already the largest exporter of LNG and Europe’s demand will diminish to meet its climate targets. Having agreed at COP28, with all other countries, to transition away from fossil fuels in line with science and with young people looking for climate leadership in an election year – support for CP2 has no political, economic or scientific upside.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Jennifer Rokala, Executive Director, Center for Western Priorities: “Today’s pause is a common-sense step in America’s energy transition. There’s no reason to build even more methane export capacity when the nation and the world are shifting away from fossil fuels. Pausing new LNG export terminals is good news for America’s public lands as well. The Energy Department should conduct a comprehensive review of the costs of LNG exports, taking into account the impacts of methane on ecosystems, communities, and families across the country.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Bill McKibben, Author, Educator, and Climate Activist; Founder of 350.org and Third Act: “The world pledged in Dubai that the time had come to transition away from fossil fuels, and today the Biden administration made a courageous step in that direction. More than any president before him, Biden has stood up to Big Oil — their outcry today is proof of what a big deal this is. All credit goes to those in the Gulf who’ve been fighting this for years–thank heaven the administration took seriously their cause, and acted boldly today. With this decision, President Biden — who already can claim to have done more to bolster clean energy than any of his predecessors — has also done more to check dirty energy, halting the largest fossil fuel expansion in history.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

“So many thanks to all who fought so hard for this, and to the president who listened to them.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Mark Ruffalo, Actor, Director, and Advocate: “THIS IS A BIG DEAL! @POTUS @JoeBiden just stood up to the fossil fuel industry in a major way & announced a halt on new LNG export terminals to review the impacts to climate. Thanks also to @Energy @SecGranholm & @alizaidi46 for your leadership!” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Lukas Ross, Climate and Energy Deputy Director, Friends of the Earth: “This is a bold and important step from President Biden, but the fight is just beginning. The climate movement is in this fight for the long haul until the LNG boom is stopped dead in its tracks.”[Quote, 1/26/24]

John Allaire, Environmental Engineer, Retired Oil and Gas Worker, Cameron Parish Resident (Louisiana): “For those of us who live in the shadow of gas export terminals, and see their toxic flares night and day, today’s decision to pause gas export terminals and overhaul the review process is very welcome news. I hope that the announcement today signals an end to the Department of Energy’s continued approval of methane exports in the form of Liquefied Natural Gas. Continuing to approve methane exports directly contradicts the Department of Energy’s Mission Statement, and real change by the Biden Administration is needed to ensure that U.S. consumers are protected from the economic, environmental, and security risks of LNG exports.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

LTG Russel Honoré (Ret.), Leader, Joint Task Force Katrina and the GreenARMY: “The news that the Biden Administration is considering the enormous climate impacts of this proposed facility is welcome news in Louisiana. Since the boom in gas exports began in 2016, the southern reaches of our state have been decimated by the oil and gas industry, which have turned our fisheries and coastal wetlands into concrete platforms larger than football fields. What used to be the headquarters of our nation’s seafood industry has all but been destroyed by gas export terminals, for which the fossil fuel industry has dredged large stretches of the Gulf and turned our rivers into shipping channels for their supertankers. All the while, Louisiana locals have been sounding the alarm bells for Washington, but with every new plant, the message was clear: local American industries simply weren’t as important as exporting liquefied gas to foreign buyers. It’s heartening to see the Administration take a critical look at the damage another massive gas export terminal would cause.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Ruth Breech, Senior Campaigner, Rainforest Action Network: “The White House is sending a very clear signal to Wall Street: the doomed methane export overbuild in the US Gulf is one of many bad investments in fossil fuel expansion. The International Energy Agency reported in 2021 that all investment in new oil and gas projects must stop. If fossil fuel backers, from banks and insurance companies, want a healthy return on investment, they must drop all fossil fuel expansion projects and compel clients to have a serious, transparent, time-bound plan for a just energy transition that emphasizes human rights of people like the Gulf coast leaders who made this White House announcement possible. The Gulf is not a sacrifice zone, and neither is the rest of the planet.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Craig Segall, Vice President, Evergreen Action: “‘LNG projects are enormous carbon bombs, and each one of them is dozens of coal-fired power plants.’ @POTUS ran & won on climate. Now, we can’t double down on pushing fossil products to the rest of the world.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Mattea Mrkusic, Energy Transition Policy Lead, Evergreen Action: “With today’s announcement, President Biden showed us he’s listening to frontline communities and serving the country well. By temporarily pausing new liquid natural gas (LNG) export terminals and revisiting whether massive fossil developments are in the public interest, the administration has taken a vital step towards protecting the climate and those most impacted by pollution—namely those in Black, Brown, Indigenous, and low-income communities..” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Collin Rees, U.S. Program Manager, Oil Change International: “The tide is turning. President Biden pausing pending LNG applications is a huge win for people and planet. Following COP28’s commitment to transition away from fossil fuels, this is one of the most significant actions ever taken by a U.S. president to stop fossil fuel expansion and protect environmental justice. The momentum for a renewable energy future is undeniable.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Quentin Scott, Federal Policy Director, Chesapeake Climate Action Network Action Fund: “This is a day so many frontline and environmental justice communities have been waiting for. On behalf of CCAN Action Fund, we applaud the President for taking a bold step towards standing up to the big polluters and these dangerous gas exports to protect our shared climate. For the first time, LNG projects will be scrutinized based on their climate, economic, and national security impacts. We strongly feel LNG projects awaiting permits will fail these tests because these gas exports only serve the interests of big oil and gas corporations. This is a pause. As the White House said, more action is needed. We will continue to keep up the fight to stand up to the fossil fuel industry and its allies in Congress that will do and say whatever they can to stop this progress and protect their billions of dollars in profits.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Melanie Oldham, Director, Better Brazoria: Clean Air and Clean Water: “I want to thank the administration for the pause in granting new licenses to LNG export facilities. Last year, when Freeport LNG exploded and sent a fireball into the air, we witnessed firsthand the dangers of these massive projects, and I hope that this pause is the first of many steps the administration takes in making sure no other LNG terminal gets built. However, the fight is not over. Freeport LNG continues to operate recklessly in my town, and we will not stop until they shut it down.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

KD Minor, Community Solutions Coordinator, Alliance for Affordable Energy: “Louisiana ranks 46th in the nation for energy efficiency, and the existing LNG infrastructure has wreaked havoc on coastal residents through exorbitant utility bills. As we experience weather extremes on both sides of the thermometer, the international commodities markets have turned Louisiana into an LNG faucet. With this welcomed announcement, it is imperative that the Biden administration consider the burden that CP2 and all proposed LNG facilities will have on our people and our ability to recover from the effects of climate change.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments: “The Biden Administration has listened to the hundreds of thousands of people who spoke out against the harm of LNG export facilities. Thank you, @POTUS & @SecGranholm, for taking action to protect our communities, climate, & future. #StopLNG #ActOnClimate” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

American Sustainable Business Network: “Today, @POTUS + @VP announced a pause on exports from new Liquefied Natural Gas projects. LNG is mostly methane, which is 80x more potent than carbon, & a major contributor to climate change. This is HUGE step to address climate crisis + transition to clean energy!” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Healthy Ocean Coalition: The Biden Administration just announced they will pause new LNG export projects and fully assess their damage to the climate, economy, & our communities.📣 Thank you, @POTUS & @SecGranholm, for standing with people over polluters! #StopLNG” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

People vs. Fossil Fuels: “This announcement from the Biden Administration is truly monumental for our communities,” – @Mzozane. Thank you, @POTUS & @SecGranholm, for taking action against new LNG exports. #StopLNG” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Natalie Mebane, Vice President of Government Affairs, Rise to Thrive: “The communities fighting for their right to breathe have already calculated the climate and health impacts of expanded LNG exports. Though a pause on the approvals of new LNG export terminals is welcomed, we must accept the scientific consensus that in order to have a safe climate, no new fossil fuel infrastructure can be built anywhere. Black and brown communities already suffer at a disproportionate rate from pollution and climate impacts. It is time for President Biden to commit to transitioning the United States off of fossil fuels and fully embrace just energy policies.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Green New Deal Network, “The Biden Admin is stalling the approval of what could become the US’ largest carbon bomb, the CP2 LNG export facility in Louisiana. This is historic progress for our movement, and especially for those living & organizing in the region. [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Youth Environmental Leaders

Elise Joshi, Executive Director, Gen-Z for Change: “Millions of people across the country have been urging the Biden Administration to take measurable action on fossil fuels; to reject new oil and gas projects, phase out current production, and build a new economy that prioritizes everything we hold dear, from unions to breathable air. This decision is a tremendous step forward in the movement for economic, environmental, and health justice.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Zanagee Artis, Executive Director, Zero Hour: “We are pleased that the Biden Administration will consider climate in the approval of new liquified natural gas export terminals. This is a step in the right direction, but this decision must lead to the only scientifically sound conclusion: a complete rejection of all new LNG export permits. For President Biden to fulfill his promises to young people, he must reject federal permits for all new fossil fuel infrastructure and commit to completely phasing fossil fuels.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

James Hiatt, Director, For a Better Bayou: “I’m thankful for this pause in granting gas export licenses; the DOE has finally heard the wake-up call. The gas industry was planning to inundate my hometown with LNG terminals. These gas export terminals, like CP2, are not just an environmental threat; they’re an economic burden on American families. As the U.S. Energy Information Administration points out, exporting LNG drives up domestic energy costs, affecting everything from home heating to food prices. It’s time to really assess our priorities and consider the wider implications of these projects – there’s no Public Interest in padding the pockets and short-term profits of big gas companies on the backs of every American family.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Santiago Mayer, Executive Director, Voters of Tomorrow: “This is yet another massive, historic climate victory from the Biden White House. With his decision to halt the approval of new Liquefied Natural Gas exports, President Biden is putting young lives first, and the effects of this monumental action will last for generations to come. Climate action is a top priority for young Americans. We are glad that President Biden shares Gen Z’s sense of urgency and is listening to us when it comes to protecting our environment. Between today’s announcement, the largest climate investment in history, and the creation of the American Climate Corps, President Biden is leading the way on climate and delivering the impactful, lasting actions that Gen Z deserves.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Michele Weindling, Political Director, Sunrise Movement: “This is a huge win for so many who have fought so hard to halt the impacts from LNG in the Gulf South. We applaud the administration for making this bold decision. This is a critical step towards phasing out fossil fuels and meeting the urgency of the crisis we are in. We hope that the Administration sees the public’s response to this decision as a massive green light signal to do everything in his power to address the climate crisis, and know that doing so is popular, celebrated, and absolutely necessary.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Climate Defiance: “This is monumental. This is utterly, utterly, monumental. On this day, January 26, 2024, President Joseph R. Biden took a big step towards banning all new gas exports. This is the most significant move any President has ever made on stopping fossil fuels.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Leah Qusba, Executive Director, Action for the Climate Emergency: “Liquefied gas exports pose an existential threat. Adding climate considerations to the permitting process for CP2 and other LNG facilities is a step towards lowering domestic energy costs being passed on to everyday Americans and fighting the climate crisis. ACE is beyond thankful for the work of frontline communities who’ve led this fight for so long, other climate and advocacy groups, and the thousands of young people who’ve made their voices heard on this critical issue. We stand ready to continue fighting for a shared future free from fossil fuels.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Climate Power: “BREAKING: @potus just halted new decisions on dangerous methane gas export facilities. In doing so, he’s acknowledging the climate crisis for what it is: the existential threat of our time. This is a HUGE win — a HISTORIC win for the climate.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Congressional and State Supporters

Arizona Congressman Raul Grijalva, Ranking Member, House Natural Resources Committee: “A healthier, more just climate future demands bold, transformational change to our energy system, and today, President Biden is showing he is up for the charge,” said Ranking Member Grijalva. “Aside from being untenable in the face of our climate goals, LNG exports perpetuate the fossil fuel industry’s long, shameful legacy of dumping their most toxic messes into Black, Brown, and poor communities with abandon. Today’s decision marks a major victory for those environmental justice communities, especially in the Gulf, who have been fighting for decades for their right to a healthy future. It’s long past time for us to recognize that the public interest does not include polluters.

“As the Biden administration moves forward with the public interest determination, I commend their commitment to analyzing impacts on climate and frontline communities, and strongly encourage them to follow both the letter and spirit of the president’s Environmental Justice for All executive order in their assessment. Our clean energy future must be one for all Americans, not just the fortunate few.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

California Congresswoman Nannette Barragan: “LNG Export Facilities threaten our climate, harm vulnerable communities & increase energy costs for Americans. Great news that @POTUS will pause approvals for these facilities. We must continue our work to prioritize environmental justice. My full statement: 👇🏾

‘President Biden’s announcement to pause Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) export facility approvals is a historic step to curb the dangerous expansion of fossil fuels. The expansion of LNG exports threatens a stable climate for future generations, increases energy costs for American homeowners and businesses, and harms the quality of life in environmental justice communities. I am proud to have co-led two letters, signed by dozens of my colleagues, to the White House and the Department of Energy calling on an update to the process used to determine whether licensees for new LNG export facilities are in the public interest. We must continue our work with communities of color and low-income communities to prioritize environmental justice and our climate over the profits of the fossil fuel industry. That is in the public interest. The future is clean energy, not polluting fossil fuels.’” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

California Congressman Ro Khanna: “Thank you, @POTUS & @ENERGY, for listening to the concerns of scientists, activists, & communities being put in harm’s way. Halting LNG exports is a huge step & will help put money back in the pockets of Americans. [Tweet, 1/26/24]

California Congressman Kevin Mullin: “I’m glad to see @POTUS delay approval of the CP2 natural gas export terminal. Reassessing the impact this project would have on climate change is an essential step in our transition to a renewable energy economy. President Biden is delivering on his promises of climate action.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Colorado Congresswoman Diana DeGette: “Halting new approvals for methane gas exports and factoring in climate impacts marks a significant step in our fight to curb fossil fuel pollution, and will bring us a cleaner, healthier future.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz: “As the U.S. makes historic progress towards building a clean energy future on the heels of the Inflation Reduction Act, we can’t simultaneously expand our reliance on fossil fuels like liquified natural gas,” said Senator Schatz. “I’m glad the Department of Energy will update its review process for future authorizations to ensure approvals are in the public’s interest – both in terms of fighting the climate crisis and not driving up energy costs for consumers.” [Statement, 1/26/2024]

Illinois Congressman Sean Casten: (1/3) “As I said at a @ScienceDems hearing last November, we should be proud of what we’ve done to expand access to renewables in the United States. But all that good work means little if we are just sending dirty fuels to be used elsewhere.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

(2/3) “We cannot claim to be decarbonizing the US economy if we continue to increase how much natural gas we send overseas. Pausing current LNG export terminal permitting approvals to review what is and is not in the public interest is the right decision.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

(3/3) “The United States is already the world’s leading gas exporter. It is not in the public interest to permit new LNG exports. Last November, I joined @RepHuffman urging the Biden Administration to reconsider the climate impact of these exports.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren: “I’ve been saying it for years: natural gas exports jack up energy prices for American families and pollute more than coal. Thank you @POTUS for standing up to fossil fuel executives. This is a big win for our economy and our climate. [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey: “For too long, the US has enabled Big Oil and Gas’s get-rich-quick scheme to drive global fossil fuel addiction while raising energy costs at home and fueling climate change. I applaud the Biden admin’s move to protect American communities from pollution and profiteering.” [Statement, 1/26/2024]

“For too long, the US has enabled Big Oil and Gas’s get-rich-quick scheme to drive global fossil fuel addiction while raising energy costs at home and fueling climate change. I applaud the Biden admin’s move to protect American communities from pollution and profiteering.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

California Congressman Jared Huffman: “Thanks to @POTUS and Democrats, we’ve made historic progress in transitioning to clean energy and getting off our planet killing addiction to fossil fuels.  But we can’t talk out of both sides of our mouths here – that progress only works if we stop sending oil and gas overseas.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

“This decision is a huge deal that will keep our energy bills lower, our communities healthier, and our country safer. But this isn’t mission accomplished. To save our planet, we need to work with our allies to get off fossil fuels for good.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

New York Senator Chuck Schumer: “Share this: President Biden and Democrats will not stop fighting for action on climate!” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley: “The science is clear: LNG – a fossil gas – is actually worse for the environment than coal. It’s irresponsible not to take climate impacts into consideration when reviewing whether new fossil gas infrastructure is in the public interest. It’s great news that the Biden administration is heeding my call to pause approval of CP2 and other proposed LNG export terminals and is revamping the process for determining if they are in the public interest, including considering climate and the environment. In partnership with climate activists around the country, I’ve pushed the Biden administration to implement a climate test as part of its process for approving dirty energy projects – including the CP2 LNG export project. It’s no secret that these projects would fail any meaningful climate test.

“It is long past time for the federal government to modernize how it determines whether the climate, environmental justice, and consumer cost impacts of LNG exports are in everyday Americans’ best interest. Since low-income and communities of color are impacted first and hardest by the effects of climate chaos, it is important that frontline communities are meaningfully and proactively engaged throughout environmental reviews. The administration’s pause included a much-needed public comment period, and it’s critical that communities directly affected by the proposed LNG terminals and other fossil gas infrastructure are given the opportunity to meaningfully engage in this process.

“This is also about American leadership globally. If we want to avoid catastrophic warming, we need to stop expanding fossil fuel infrastructure now. Exporting fossil gas cannot be part of U.S. climate policy—it obliterates our climate goals and undermines our international climate leadership. The National Climate Assessment not only highlighted the damage climate chaos has already done to our communities, it reaffirmed that things will get worse in the future, if we don’t act now.

“This is a great step in the right direction. But we can’t underestimate the power that Big Oil wields, and it will continue to try to weaken review standards to lock in generations of dirty fossil projects. We have to fight for a world beyond the special interest greed that is holding us back from a clean energy future.” [Statement, 1/26/2024]

“BIG: The Biden Administration is hitting pause on the CP2 LNG export project as they consider what’s best for the public interest. This is a step forward—and I’ll keep pushing to END approvals for new climate-killing LNG facilities!” [Tweet, 1/25/2024]

Rhode Island Senator Jack Reed: “This is good news for American consumers. It will increase the supply of domestic natural gas, which should create downward pressure on prices for Americans to heat their homes and power their businesses. Energy speculators may be upset that they can’t sell as much gas abroad, but this is a big win for working Americans here at home. The Biden Administration deserves credit for putting America first and helping to lower domestic gas prices.” [Statement, 1/26/2024]

Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse: “Great move from @POTUS 👏🏼 To fail to consider emissions effects would be folly, and probably illegal as well.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

“Reaching our climate goals requires bold action, a transition to clean energy, and swift implementation of the Biden Admin’s newly announced social cost of carbon. Climate bombs like CP2 have no business in our shared future.” [Tweet, 1/26/2024]

Washington Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal: “This is an ENORMOUS move by @POTUS to stand up to the fossil fuel industry and protect our environment. The climate crisis is an existential threat, and we must do all we can to stop it and save our planet and our people.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Washington Governor Jay Inslee: “President Biden’s decision to pause consideration of permits for proposed LNG export facilities is sound – scientifically and economically. Locking in giant infrastructure to this extent without full consideration of climate impacts and the availability of new, clean energy sources is not in our nation’s long term interest.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

International Voices

Svitlana Romanko, Director, Ukrainian organization Razom We Stand: “Fossil fuels and LNG continue to contribute to massive problems across the planet: economic losses in the trillions, climate disruption, geopolitical conflict and horrific war, breathing problems costing millions of lives. The solution is to build out cheaper clean energy, like wind and solar, and to stop subsidizing fossil fuels and LNG, which received $7 trillion in subsidies globally last year, according to the IMF. If the reporting is true, President Biden’s efforts to stop addiction to fossil fuels and to support clean energy are well recognized, and are a shining model others must follow. Only when we end fossil fuels can we win over petro dictators, and stop Big Oil profiteering off the Russian War in Ukraine.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Lidy Nacpil, Coordinator, Asian Peoples Movement on Debt and Development (APMDD), Philippines: “This decision will help advance rapid and just transition to renewable energy-based systems in the Asia region and other places where the US exports LNG. For far too long, our communities in Asia have been used to justify continued fossil fuel expansion despite the massive harm to our lives, ecosystems, and planet. We urge the Biden Administration to go further and put a full stop to LNG expansion and fulfill its climate finance obligations to countries in the Global South.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Fanny Tri Jambore, Head of Campaign Division, Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia (WALHI), Indonesia: “By reflecting on the situation in Indonesia, where the gas and LNG industry apart from contributing to increasing greenhouse gas emissions is also not free from the problem of human rights violations and environmental destruction. From genocide in Aceh to ecocide in Sidoarjo, East Java, a trend of destruction accompanies various gas projects in Indonesia. The promotion of gas and LNG and their derivatives, such as the use of co-firing hydrogen and ammonia in PLTUs, cannot be considered an energy transition, but rather an effort to accommodate corporate interests in continuing to use fossil fuels. So, President Biden’s decision should be further used to truly stop the use of fossil energy and start increasing electricity generation based on clean, renewable and fair energy, instead of being trapped in false solutions.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Joojin Kim, Chief Executive Officer, Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC), South Korea, “The latest decision from the United States reflects the need to center our energy system around people, not the fossil fuel industry. Each year, we see worsening climate disasters in Asia, driven by fossil fuels, costing the region countless lives and economic detriment. To put it quite simply, Asia does not want or need LNG. This region has rich resources for solar and wind energy, and investments in renewable energy in the area are ramping up. As the role of gas begins to dwindle, reassessing the need for new LNG exports is not only an important move to accelerate Asia’s energy transition but to avoid stranded asset risk for the United States.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Prof. Dr. Niklas Höhne, NewClimate Institute in Germany, Professor at Wageningen University, The Netherlands: “Europe does not need LNG from the USA in the long run. The current infrastructure is more than sufficient to secure the energy supply – even under extreme scenarios.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

John Beard, Executive Director of the Port Arthur Community Action Network, “This is welcomed news from the Biden Administration and a step toward climate justice. The jury is still out on whether these 17 and other projects are in the public interest, or will even get built, especially in sacrificed communities in the Gulf South, Appalachia, Alaska and tribal ancestral lands. We need to know the details of this “pause”; what will be the process and criteria considerations for new fracked gas and petrochem infrastructure? Affected communities must be at the table, their concerns heard and acted upon. This is an important step in the climate justice journey, but more work remains.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Prof. Dr. Claudia Kemfert, Economic expert at DIW Berlin (German Institute for Economic Research) and Leuphana University, Germany: “Expanding LNG infrastructure in the USA and in the EU is a high economic risk that will very likely end up as stranded assets.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Prof. Dr. Stefan Rahmstorf, Climatologist, PIK and University of Potsdam, Germany: “We are already very close to the 1.5 °C climate change limit, so we can only emit more CO2 if at the same time the fossil methane emissions are reduced drastically. Expanding LNG production would do just the opposite.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Yuri Okubo, Senior Climate Engagement Strategist, Renewable Energy Institute, Japan: “Biden’s decision is a positive stride for Japan and the wider Asia-Pacific region, sending a clear signal to its financiers eyeing LNG expansion. With the imperative to keep global warming below the critical 1.5°C threshold, the pause on new LNG export permits signifies a reassessment of priorities. What Japan and Asia urgently require for their energy and national security is a rapid expansion of domestically generated renewable energy. The decision sets the stage for a more sustainable path, underscoring the need for a mindful and responsible approach to our energy landscape.”[Statement, 1/26/24]

Other Advocacy Organizations

Center for American Progress: “Good News Friday: The Biden administration is taking our environmental concerns SERIOUSLY.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Voters of Tomorrow: “‘We will not cede to special interests. We will heed the calls of young people.’ – @POTUS A win for our generation, our nation, and our planet.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

Kathleen Thompson, Executive Director, Progress Texas: “Progress Texas celebrates potential action from the Biden Administration and Secretary Granholm acknowledging Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) exports’ harm to American citizens and the environment. Texas and neighbor Louisiana are two of the top oil and gas exporters, and we have an interest in ensuring prices stay affordable here at home, that our families are safe from the high and long term costs of LNG on our health and local economies, and of course, not adding more fuel to the fire of our already scorching climate. We believe this pause in approvals is real progress. President Biden is answering the call to action across the country, and a pause will help combat the climate crisis in Texas—one of the most threatened states in America.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Janessa Goldbeck, CEO, Vet Voice Foundation: “We applaud the decision by President Biden and Secretary Granholm to tackle a serious national security vulnerability by pausing the approval of new LNG exports and reassessing whether sending more US gas overseas is in the best interest of our country and national security. Amid the oil and gas industry’s ongoing push to keep raking in record profits, LNG exports have devolved from an asset for our allies to a serious national security vulnerability. Europe’s need for gas has been met and is declining, but greedy CEOs are pushing to keep their cash cow going by selling US LNG to our adversaries in record numbers. Before it has even been built, LNG from the CP2 facility is already contracted to go to Chinese companies. To put it plainly, letting China buy up huge quantities of American LNG and leverage it to expand their influence over the global energy market is a serious risk to our national security; one that could harm our ability to sufficiently respond in moments of crisis. Coupled with the fact that they greatly exacerbate climate change and the challenges it poses to the safety and security of our nation’s military personnel around the globe, LNG exports must be assessed for their risks across the board. The Biden Administration is making the prudent move for our national security and our nation by pausing new approvals and looking closely at the risks involved with the ongoing LNG buildout.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Tyson Slocum, Energy Program Director, Public Citizen: “For far too long, Big Oil executives have pursued an ‘America Last’ policy, price gouging consumers, pushing harmful export policies, in a myopic and ham-fisted vision that puts profit above everything. Reconsidering the impact fossil fuel exports have on our economy and climate is a vital step toward protecting American households from the impact LNG exports have on higher utility bills. Eighty-five years ago, Congress mandated that natural gas exports must be ‘consistent with the public interest,’ and the federal government’s current approval process ignores the overwhelming evidence that LNG exports expose American families to higher energy costs, pollute communities of color, and spew greenhouse gas emissions that imperil our climate.” [Statement, 1/26/24]

Public Citizen: “BREAKING: Biden paused all pending LNG export projects! Big Oil’s exports have raised energy bills for tens of millions of American families. Pausing export reviews will ensure we don’t bear the brunt of Big Oil’s profiteering. This is huge.” [Tweet, 1/26/24]

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