Former Shell Oil President John Hofmeister joined the chorus of oil and gas industry leaders who are sounding the alarm over Joe Biden's plan to neuter fracking, warning Tuesday that the Democratic presidential candidate has "no concept" of how important the process is to the American economy and national security.
"The American people will pay," Hofmeister told FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo on "Mornings with Maria." "They will be poorer. They will have a harder time getting their energy, all because of a politician’s narrow-mindedness and shallowness when it comes to the subject of energy."
Biden said on Saturday that he supports a fracking ban on federal lands and waters, which account for 13% of the nation’s natural gas production. The comments came as he attempted to clarify remarks made at last week’s debate that supported transitioning the U.S. away from oil.
A fracking ban on federal lands and waters would deliver a $700 billion hit to U.S. gross domestic product through 2030 and erase more than $9 billion in revenue, a portion of which is used to fund education and conservation programs, according to a study released last month by API. Such a ban would also result in 1 million job losses by 2022 with the states of Texas, Wyoming and New Mexico absorbing the biggest blows.
Fracking is the process of injecting water into shale rock at high pressure to extract natural gas. Proponents argue that the process has been instrumental in America securing its energy security and has resulted in a sharp drop in carbon dioxide emissions over the past decade.
Critics, however, claim that fracking pollutes the environment and contributes to greenhouse gases that lead to global warming.
Hofmeister said Biden's dismissal of the 60-year process stems from his ignorance on the issue.
"What Biden does not understand is that the process of fracking has been around for 60 years... and he wants to come along and say 'no, we can’t do this anymore," he argued.
"He has no concept of how important molecules are to the vitality of the American economy and to the quality of American life and to the national security of this nation," Hofmesteir added.
"He just bizarrely blows it all off because he doesn’t understand it, to start with, and he’s just using talking points from members of his staff."
The American Petroleum Institute revealed Tuesday that a Biden victory would pose a risk to roughly 7.5 million jobs, an assessment Hofmeister agreed with.
"What that takes into account are all the people that support the fracking activity, starting with the iron ore that’s necessary for the underground piping, the steel pipe and you take it to, the machinists who are shaping the metal, who are building the material product that goes into the ground," he explained.
If implemented, Biden's federal fracking ban would also impact the hundreds of Texans making "charges for the fracking process," Hofmeister added. "It goes on and on. And then it’s the service companies, the drilling companies, then it’s the engineers that design the wells."
President Trump on Monday reminded voters of his opponent's plans to cut millions of jobs, tweeting, "On live television, Joe Biden confirmed his plan to ABOLISH the entire U.S. Oil Industry—that means NO fracking, NO jobs, and NO energy for Pennsylvania Families!"
FOX Business' Jonathan Garber contributed to this report.