House backs Pfluger’s LNG bill

Congressman seeks to block Biden’s ban on new export terminals

WASHINGTON, D.C. The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday passed and sent to the Senate a bill proposed by Congressman August Pfluger to reverse President Joe Biden’s ban of the construction of new liquefied natural gas export terminals.

“President Biden has used every weapon and every tool available to him to make producing American energy more difficult,” said Pfluger, an San Angelo Republican who represents Ector County in the 11th Congressional District. “His decision to ban future U.S. LNG exports is just the latest strike in his efforts to appease his radical climate interest groups who refuse to accept the reality that American energy is the cleanest, most secure option for the U.S. and our allies.

“The decision to ban exports creates uncertainty and discourages investments that would otherwise create jobs and expand the supply of natural gas. I am proud that the House passed my Unlocking Our Domestic LNG Potential Act of 2024 to promote American energy dominance and stand up for jobs in the Permian Basin.”

Biden on Jan. 26 had announced an indefinite ban on the issuance of permits for LNG exports to non-Free Trade Agreement countries while a review was conducted to consider the climate impacts of natural gas.

“Current law requires that natural gas exports to countries with which the U.S. has an FTA be approved without delay,” the congressman said. “For non-FTA countries, the energy secretary is required to approve export requests unless they find that exports ‘will not be consistent with the public interest.’

“There is a clear statutory presumption that U.S. LNG exports are in the public interest.”

Pfluger’s bill would transfer that authority to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

He said the U.S. Department of Energy has already commissioned five studies to examine the effects of U.S. LNG exports.

“The results unanimously demonstrate the benefits to the U.S. economy and domestic natural gas prices,” Pfluger said. “The DOE has also issued two studies that examined the life cycle greenhouse gas impacts of U.S. LNG exports that show strong environmental benefits. In fact, the two prior presidential administrations conducted these studies without blocking export permits.”

The bill would amend the Natural Gas Act to repeal all restrictions on the import and export of natural gas.