Psaki pushes renewable energy to stop dependence on foreign oil instead of increasing US production
Comments come as fears that energy prices could continue to rise amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the U.S. needs to decrease its reliance on foreign oil by switching over to renewable energy, not increasing domestic production.
"We need to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, on oil in general, and we need to look at other ways of having energy in our country and others," Psaki said during an interview with ABC This Week Sunday. "We've seen over the last week or so... a number of European countries are recognizing they need to reduce their own reliance on Russian oil."
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Psaki's comments come as fears grow that energy prices could continue to rise amid Russia's ongoing war in Ukraine, with many NATO countries such as Germany dependent on Russian oil to fuel their countries.
That dependence has also limited the international response to Russia's invasion, with sanctions being specifically designed not to target Russian fuel exports amid fears such a move could send energy prices soaring in Europe.
The comments also come after the Biden administration last week began delaying decisions on new oil and gas leases after a federal judge blocked the administration from using higher climate change cost estimates when regulating polluting industries.
The ruling stems from President Biden's decision on his first day in office to restore the climate cost estimate to $51 per ton of carbon dioxide emissions, up from the $7 it was slashed to during the Trump administration.
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Biden has come under increasing pressure to walk back resistance to domestic oil production in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, with Rep. August Pfluger, R-Texas, arguing such a move would help the U.S. "regain our dominance on the world stage."
"The Permian Basin is the most prolific production area in the entire world," Pfluger said last week. "We must unleash and innovate to make sure the production continues to be strong, that we regain our dominance on the world stage in the oil and gas we supply, not only for our domestic needs but also our partners and allies so that they’re not dependent on maligned actors like Russia and China."
Since 2021 Russia is the United States' top source of imported gasoline and other refined petroleum products, Forbes recently reported. Lithium, one of the main ingredients in rechargeable batteries used in cars, phones, and other products, chiefly originates in China.