Biden’s Federal Oil Lease Pause Reinstated by Court

Biden's Federal Oil Lease Pause Reinstated by Court

Biden SQUIRMS Out Of The Fossil Fuel Promise

( – In the days after President Joe Biden assumed office in January 2021, he announced the government would pause new federal oil and gas leases. The move was part of his promise in the 2020 presidential campaign plan to eradicate fossil fuels, although the order did not stop drilling on existing leases. Louisiana and at least a dozen other states sued the administration to prevent the executive order from going into effect. They argued the rule would hurt their state economies, workers, and families. A lower court agreed and placed an injunction on the government’s action.

On Wednesday, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals overruled the lower court. Typically an extremely conservative court, its Justices ruled that US District Judge Terry Doughty was not specific enough in his determination to place an injunction against the Department of the Interior. The decision was a temporary victory for the Biden administration. Still, it’s unknown what effect it will have long term.

The ruling could be moot. On Wednesday, the president signed the “Inflation Reduction Act” into law. At the insistence of Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), the law requires the federal government to reinstate $192 million in oil leases in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska. The law also demands the Interior Department sell periodic oil and gas leases on 60 million acres offshore and another 2 million acres onshore.

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