A new report from the Wall Street Journal reveals that President Joe Biden and his administration have just set a new record-low for the leasing of federal lands for the purpose of oil and gas drilling.
The Journal reports:
The Biden administration has leased fewer acres for oil-and-gas drilling offshore and on federal land than any other administration in its early stages dating back to the end of World War II, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis.
A look at Biden’s numbers
Thus far into Biden’s presidency, the Journal reports that the Interior Department has leased 126,228 acres of federal land for the purpose of oil and gas drilling.
This may sound like a big number, but it isn’t. In fact, it isn’t even close to a big number.
The Journal reports that one would have to go back to 1969, during the administration of President Richard Nixon, to find a president who, at this point in their presidency, leased out fewer than 4.4 million acres of federal land for drilling.
Further putting Biden’s numbers into perspective
Whereas one would have to go back to Nixon to find a president who leased out fewer than 4.4 million acres of federal land for drilling, one would have to go back even farther to find a president who leased out fewer acres than Biden.
According to the Journal, in fact, one would have to go back to 1945, during the administration of President Harry Truman, to find a president who, at the 19-month week of his presidency, had leased out fewer acres of federal land for drilling than Biden.
Truman, at the time, had leased out 65,658 acres. But, context is important.
The Journal reports that, at the time, “offshore drilling was just beginning and the federal government didn’t yet control the deep-water leases that have made up the largest part of the federal oil-and-gas program in modern times.”
Biden has significantly limited such leasing in order to further the Democrats’ climate change agenda. The problem for Biden, though, is that he has been getting hammered as the energy crisis continues and Republicans continue to emphasize that America could solve the energy crisis by drilling here, at home.
Biden has likely leased any federal lands for drilling. He did, after all, make a campaign promise to flat out put an end to drilling on federal property. Biden is clearly trying to walk a fine line here between furthering the left’s climate change agenda and appeasing Americans suffering from the energy crisis with token federal leasing.
We’ll see how this works out for Biden and the Democrats, particularly as the price of oil and gas continues to rise, largely due to Biden and the Democrats’ policies, including his refusal to up oil and gas leasing.