WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today spoke on the Senate floor about how the Biden administration’s energy and environmental policy decisions have created the record-breaking gas prices Americans are struggling to deal with today.
RECORD GAS PRICES WHILE BATTLING INFLATION: “Today, West Virginia’s average is up to $4.90 while the national average is $4.96. Last week, the national average for a gallon of gas was more than $5. More than $5! Think about that. And worse, these high gas prices hit hardest-working Americans the hardest. As Axios reported: ‘…Americans who earn less than $50,000 a year are currently spending nearly 10% of their credit card bills on gas, compared with 6% for households earning more than $125,000.’ These prices are not sustainable for American families, especially when you consider not only gas, but with the out-of-control inflation, they’re battling [when buying] gas, electricity, groceries, and other necessities.”
LAUNDRY LIST OF BAD POLICIES: “The administration has canceled pipelines, rescinded previously-issued approvals for others, and raised barriers to building new ones. They have frozen oil and gas leasing and proposed raising royalties – costs that will be passed on to every consumer. They are revising the NEPA environmental review process, undoing the streamlining that was done during 2020 to speed up project delivery. Biden’s EPA has hammered small refineries – including the one in my state – by denying hardship relief that could immediately help lower fuel prices. And Biden’s EPA has also announced a proposal under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act to make it easier for activists to prevent infrastructure projects.”
FINGER POINTING & MIXED MESSAGES: “They’ve pointed fingers at energy producers and refiners with claims of price gouging. They’ve pointed fingers at Vladimir Putin, despite the fact that gas prices were steadily increasing for months before the invasion of Ukraine. The White House is content to keep finger-pointing while refusing to take responsibility for their own actions. They know the pain their actions cause. They know that their actions are causing pain. They know that with these policies and pledges from climate czar John Kerry to stop using our own American fuels—they are chilling the investments we need today. For example, who would make a billion-dollar, forty-year investment in the refining capacity—that we desperately need today—when John Kerry promises oil and gas investments will be ‘stranded assets.’ Nothing the White House has promised will fix those kinds of issues.”
AMERICANS SEE THE PLAYBOOK: “This administration is fiercely determined to kill the oil and gas sector and baseload power sector in this country—rule-by-rule—executive action by executive action and hardworking Americans are paying for it at the pump. The American people see what’s happening here: Democrats want to continue layering on more regulations and legislation that will keep passing more and more costs onto the consumer… All while the Biden administration is working as hard as it can to shutter baseload coal and natural gas energy production and electricity.”
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