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  • Jed Gurath

Let's Go Brandon?



So I am sure many of you have heard the slogan “Let's Go Brandon”, first begun as a misunderstanding now a political slogan to rally against President Joe Biden. We promote freedom of speech and we think another component of this freedom is learning to think for yourself. Chanting a slogan that is meant to be a euphemism for “F*ck Joe Biden” is anything but helpful or productive on its own. While this chant or slogan, whatever you name it, is popular among those who dislike the 46th President of the United States– it has also been used in relation to ever rising gas prices. While it's easy to blame the president for many of the issues in the United States, it seems disingenuous to say that he has all of the responsibility or blame for what's causing these shortages, inflation rates and the such. Especially the notion that this was Biden's intention. We need to dig deeper.


Prices at the pump were rising well before Russia invaded Ukraine but nonetheless such an event only exacerbated the effects if not made them worse. At the end of 2021, before the invasion, Joe Biden announced to the public that his administration would provide 50 million barrels of crude oil from America's Strategic Petroleum Reserve. This reserve is specifically meant for emergencies where our independent production is either under attack or we ran out due to various instances. Such a decision from Biden will not counteract his policies affecting energy costs of course. According to the PBS Experts (1), it was quite literally “a drop in the ocean” in the world of energy policy.


First let's look at many policies that do very well contribute to raising energy costs, that way we can see what things the President does impact directly with the stroke of his pen in the White House. Here is a short list of a few actions Biden directed that influence energy bills.


The White House’s Policies


New EPA Oil and Gas Regulations


In late 2021, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) announced new rules regarding methane emissions from oil and gas production, storage, transmission, and distribution costing around $1,000,000,000 annually. In the spring of 2021, Biden also signed a resolution overturning the Trump Administration's reforms of the EPA — reforms such as one pertaining to Section 111 of the Clean Air Act (H.J.Res.34). A section that would quickly ban fracking and oil techniques. Biden achieved this with Executive Order 13990. (2)(3)(4)


Biden Halts Oil and Gas Leases


AP News reports, “The Biden administration is delaying decisions on new oil and gas drilling on federal land and other energy-related actions. The ruling also will delay plans to restrict methane waste emissions from natural gas drilling on public lands and a court-ordered plan to develop energy conservation standards for manufactured housing, the administration said. The ruling also will delay a $2.3 billion federal grant program for transit projects, officials said…” (5)


Biden halts Alaska’s Oil Drilling


NBC News says, “The Biden administration… suspended oil and gas leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, reversing a drilling program approved by the Trump administration … and a rich reserve of oil…” (6)


Biden has rescinded Endangered Species Act reforms


The Hill suggests, “Consider that most endangered species rely on habitat found on private lands, yet the Endangered Species Act’s punitive approach does little to encourage landowners to restore habitat for imperiled species or to reward states that develop innovative programs to conserve species on private lands. In fact, landowners who restore habitat often are “rewarded” with costly red tape and land-use regulations, making rare species liabilities to be avoided instead of assets to be protected.” (7)


Biden's statements about Fossil Fuels and their future regulation. The White House described the Climate Corps’ role as "conserving our public lands and waters, bolstering community resilience, and advancing environmental justice."In that legislation, members of the Climate Corps would receive $15 per hour pay, childcare, counseling, and education grants up to $25,000. (8)


Conclusion


As a result of the current administration's changes and massive reform revocations, many policies do in fact directly impact the production of gasoline and crude oil in this country. In addition to Biden's party advocating for sweeping changes that would undermine a large portion of America's economy and negatively impact working class citizens. Changes that are not made for the current year nor to be beneficial for those who truly believe in a fossil fuel free nation. These radical changes are now associated with all Green energy advocacy and used among those who use it as a rallying cry for those who oppose modern alternative energy sources. Instead of beneficial and respectful dialogue, the two parties bicker about who did what – demonizing each other about the human impact on the environment. Climate change doesn’t wait for any man, this is true. But if we don’t set time aside to truly understand each other, nothing will ever be completed nor will we achieve what every individual desires.


The Bottomline (Opinion)


Dear Republicans While many of Biden's policies directly target and affect America’s supply of a valuable asset for means of climate and environmental justice… It's important to know the general specific policies that contribute. Instead of blindly yelling and screaming as a rally against a president you didn’t vote for, do some research and rally behind different & new legislation — civilly. Use concise and accurate terminology, do the studying, learn about the people you say are your enemies, and try to find flaws in your own arguments. That way you’ll be better prepared and might find more allies than rivals.


Dear Democrats


After we have directed much of this article towards most Anti-Biden Republicans in an effort for them to receive a general understanding behind what they’re rallying against, this bit is more directed towards the Pro-Biden Democrats. When you say the President doesn’t directly affect gas prices or supply and demand, yet during the beginning of the pandemic and the onslaught of crises in 2020, many blamed Donald Trump for the exact same things… who is this fooling? It's one thing to not understand or know something but it's another to be blindingly hypocritical. In addition to this, if the Democrats are truly for climate justice and environmental policy, they should definitely be on board with these changes. As a result, this means accepting the fact that phasing out fossil fuels a bit early will cause this sort of upheaval and discontent.


Dear Reader,


The Stair Party supports green energy and alternative sources, as opposed to Carbon Dioxide emitting sources. However, how to achieve a more green country is not by initiating sweeping bans on vehicle, recreational, and or institutionalized activities/services/products that the average American depends on at the current time. Electric and/or Green powered items of the aforementioned list are exceedingly more expensive (9). In addition for the most part less reliable, less resilient, and more prone to be less efficient to properly replace our current systems. But ultimately this is why partisan bickering won’t solve anything, all it’s doing is slowing down progress, halting current energy production, stifling the prices and supply of goods, aiding wealth accumulation to those who can afford to pay higher prices and overall fueling a negative feedback loop of unsustainable corporate greed.


Sources:

  1. Brangham, W., & Zahn, H. (2021, November 23). How tapping strategic oil reserve will affect U.S. gas prices, OPECt. PBS.Org. Retrieved February 24, 2022, from: https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/hOW-tapping-strategic-oil-reserve-will-affect-u-s-gas-prices-opec

  2. EPA Proposes New Source Performance Standards Updates, Emissions Guidelines to Reduce Methane and Other Harmful Pollution from the Oil and Natural Gas Industry. (2021, November 2). EPA.Gov. Retrieved February 24, 2022, from https://www.epa.gov/controlling-air-pollution-oil-and-natural-gas-industry/epa-proposes-new-source-pertormance

  3. EO 13990: Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science To Tackle the Climate Crisis (2021). (2021, January 20). Energy.Gov. Retrieved February 25, 2022, from https://www.energy.gov/nepa/articles/eo-13990-protecting-public-health-and-environment-and-restoring-science-tackle

  4. Ceronsky, M., & Carbonell, T. (2013, February). Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act The Legal Foundation for Strong, Flexible & Cost-Effective Carbon Pollution Standards for Existing Power Plants. Def.Org. Retrieved February 25, 2022, from https://www.edf.org/sites/default/files/section-111-d-of-the-clean-air-act_the-legal-foundation-for-strong-flexible-cost-effective-carbon-pollution-standards-for-existing-power-plants.pdf#:~:text=Section%20111%20of%20the%20Clean%20Air%20Act%20provides,%C2%A7%20111%20Carbon%20Pollution%20Standards%20for%20power%20plants.

  5. Daly, M. (2022, February 22). Biden halts oil, gas leases amid legal fight on climate cost. Apnews.Com. Retrieved February 26, 2022, from https://apnews.com/article/climate-business-environment-and-nature-91f740cbd9f5f872fcdee911ff5f8026

  6. Biden suspends oil-drilling leases in Alaska’s Arctic refuge. (2021, June 1). Nbcnews.Com. Retrieved February 23, 2022, from https://www.nbcnews.com/business/energy/biden-suspends-oil-drilling-leases-alaska-s-arctic-refuge-n1269270

  7. Regan, S., & Wood, J. (2021, June 17). Don’t reject Trump’s endangered species rules outright. Thehill.Com. Retrieved February 24, 2022, from https://thehill.com/opinion/energy-environment/558391-dont-reject-trumps-endangered-species-rules-outright

  8. FACT SHEET: The American Jobs Plan. (2021, March 31). Whitehouse.Gov. Retrieved March 1, 2022, from https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/03/31/fact-sheet-the-american-jobs-plan/

  9. Taylor, D. (2021, April 20). Electric Car vs Gas Costs: Which Truly Saves You The Most Money? Walletgenius.Com. Retrieved February 26, 2022, from https://walletgenius.com/money/save-money/electric-car-vs-gas-costs-which-truly-saves-you-the-most-money/#:~:text=Although%20electric%20vehicles%20have%20already%20existed%20for%20more,runs%20about%20%2435%2C000%2C%20according%20to%20Kelly%20Blue%20Book


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