June 10, 2022

Natural gas infrastructure needed to reduce global emissions and secure allies, say former Democratic Senators

The confluence of war in Europe with a global energy security crisis is reality – not exploitation by the fossil fuel industry, as White House climate special envoy John Kerry said this week. Energy security imperatives go hand-in-hand with the climate crisis. It’s time to agree that President Biden’s LNG export commitment to Europe requires expanded infrastructure here at home.

The president has committed the U.S. liquefied natural gas industry to supply an additional 15 billion cubic tons (bct) of LNG to Europe through the remainder of 2022. The agreement additionally envisions U.S. LNG increasing that supply to Europe to 50 bct through 2030. To support Europe and expedite the President’s commitment, the U.S. needs incremental pipelines and terminals to export the additional LNG supplies. But removing U.S. regulatory barriers for building this incremental infrastructure isn’t part of the President’s order.

Kerry has recognized the role natural gas must play in a cleaner energy future, but his refusal to acknowledge the engineering requirements to accomplish President Biden’s commitments to Europe simply ignores the facts. We cannot continue to let politics get in the way of the practical, science-based solution that enables renewables to partner with natural gas to maintain reliability, affordability and helps protect our allies around the globe from energy exploitation.

A handful of countries – including China, Russia, Brazil and India, are responsible for the vast majority of the world’s emissions. The best way to achieve our global energy goals is to replace international coal with American natural gas. We are feeling the effect of inaction: Already, 15 years of climate gains in the U.S. have been erased by increased coal use in Europe. This should be a wakeup call to all who care about our climate and our clean energy future.

Sen. Mary Landrieu, Sen. Heidi Heitkamp

Co-Chairs, Leadership Council of Natural Allies for a Clean Energy Future