White House Considers Declaring a ‘Climate Emergency’ in Order To Crack Down on Fossil Fuels

Discussions of a declaration come amid record high oil production in America.

Erin Schaff/the New York Times via AP
President Biden speaks at the UN Climate Change Conference COP26 at Glasgow, Scotland, November 2, 2021. Erin Schaff/the New York Times via AP

The White House is once again considering declaring a national climate emergency, a measure which could be used to exert executive power over the fossil fuel industries.

Advisors to the president are reportedly resuming discussion of the potential benefits of declaring a climate emergency, according to Bloomberg. 

An emergency declaration by the president could be used to regulate crude oil exports, suspend offshore drilling, and otherwise regulate greenhouse gas emissions. An emergency would allow him to take such action without congressional approval.

According to the reports, advisors to the president are divided on the merits of a declaration. In a statement to Bloomberg, White House spokesman Angelo Fernandez Hernandez said that Mr. Biden has “delivered on the most ambitious climate agenda in history.”

“President Biden has treated the climate crisis as an emergency since day one and will continue to build a clean energy future that lowers utility bills, creates good-paying union jobs, makes our economy the envy of the world and prioritizes communities that for too long have been left behind,” Mr. Hernandez said.

Discussions of a declaration come amid record high oil production in America. In 2023, America extracted more crude oil than any country in the history of the world, averaging 12.9 million barrels of crude oil a day.

The discussions also come in advance of Earth Day, April 22, during which activist groups like the Sunrise Movement, Fridays For Future USA, and the Campus Climate Network are expected to protest in support of an emergency declaration.

The Sunrise Movement’s executive director, Aru Shiney-Ajay, told Bloomberg that the world is facing  “another summer of floods, fires, hurricanes and extreme heat,” and that the president needs to “use every tool at his disposal to tackle the climate crisis and prepare our communities to weather the storm.”

“If Biden wants to win the youth vote, he needs to take forceful action on climate change,” Ms. Shiney-Ajay said.

A move to address climate could be an overture to young voters, who tend to care more about climate change than older voters and have soured on the president over his ardent support for Israel.

The New York Sun

© 2024 The New York Sun Company, LLC. All rights reserved.

Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. The material on this site is protected by copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used.

The New York Sun

Sign in or  create a free account

By continuing you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use