Biden admin urged to freeze oil export project approvals


A coalition of 20 environmental groups is calling on the Biden administration to pause reviews and approvals of proposed deepwater oil export facilities, echoing concerns that led to a halt earlier this year on new gas export licenses.

In a letter sent Thursday by the Sierra Club, the groups said more is required of the Department of Transportation to meet “its statutory duty of ensuring licensing decisions are consistent with the ‘national interest,’” as well as environmental quality and energy goals.

The groups said that issuing licenses to deepwater crude oil export terminals leads to “climate-disrupting pollution.” In addition to the Sierra Club, signatories to the letter included Earthjustice, the Center for Biological Diversity and the Vessel Project of Louisiana.

At a minimum, the Biden administration should update its analyses to “address the harms generated by expansive oil exports on the climate” and to factor in consequences for communities that have long faced disproportionate pollution burdens, the coalition argued.

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