WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) recently spoke on the Senate floor about how President Joe Biden’s radical energy policies are causing our country to be more dependent on China.
Excerpts from Sen. Barrasso’s remarks:
On Biden’s War on American Energy:
“I come to the floor today to talk about the Biden administration’s war on American energy.
“Time and again, Joe Biden’s energy policies have hurt America and have helped China. On Joe Biden’s first day in office, he shut down the Keystone XL Pipeline, and I think he did it for spite.
“It would have brought 800,000 barrels of oil to this country every single day.
“Joe Biden then stopped all new energy leases on federal land, and in Wyoming we have a lot of federal land.
“He did it in a way that was blatantly illegal. A federal judge actually ordered Joe Biden to follow the law, to sell energy leases. Follow the law.
“Joe Biden also raised taxes on natural gas by billions of dollars. He raised taxes on coal by $1 billion as well.
“As a nation today, we are still producing about 2 million barrels of oil less than was projected we would be producing every day, a number of years ago, before the pandemic.
“With lower production and higher taxes, it is no wonder that energy prices have been painful for the American people–punishing for the American people–who are just trying to make ends meet. Working families have lost nearly $3,000 specifically because of Joe Biden’s radical leftwing energy policy.
“We are paying a lot more than that for additional causes of inflation, but on energy alone, it has been about $3,000 more than they should have spent in a normal situation.”
On China Benefitting from Biden’s Policies:
“And who have been the big winners under all of this? Well, regrettably, it has been China.
“We are really less independent, less competitive, and more dependent on China.
“This is compared to the day that Joe Biden took office. I am going to give you a couple of examples.
“First, Joe Biden ended America’s role in helping developing countries–other developing countries–explore for energy.
“Many countries are very poor, but they do have massive energy resources. They just need some help in getting to use them.
“Millions of people could have benefited and been lifted out of poverty if we had helped them use the energy that they already had.
“ Joe Biden stubbornly refuses. As a result, now these countries that need money to develop their energy resources–what are they doing?
“More debt to China means more control by China, overall, of these additional countries.
Joe Biden won’t let us in the United States help these countries or help the World Bank or help other lending institutions lend to those countries–and we see it all over Africa–because Joe
“Biden is too pure, and he doesn’t like their energy. So he just turns them right over to China for predatory lending. Joe Biden’s obsession with electric vehicles also is turning over American power and money to China.
“The batteries in electric vehicles require a specific set of critical minerals–a specific set of critical minerals that goes into the batteries of electric vehicles.
“Just in the past few weeks, Joe Biden has shut down proposed copper mines in Minnesota and in Alaska.
“Well, where are we going to get the minerals for the electric vehicles that Joe Biden and the Democrats want us to buy?
“China and countries under the influence of China. China produces three-quarters of all of the lithium-ion batteries.
“China also has 70 percent of the world’s production capacity for the key parts of EV batteries.
“All of these are necessary for the electric vehicles that the Democrats and Joe Biden say we must buy. Where are these going to come from?
“There is only one place, and they won’t let us have it from America. They won’t let us use what we have here.
“China now dominates copper and cobalt mining in places like the Congo. The conditions at many of these mines–and this has been widely reported–are inhumane: child labor, brutal conditions.
“Young mothers often bring their babies with them to the mines. Not in the United States–oh, no, we are too pure here in the United States to be able to mine for the chemicals that are needed for the electric vehicles.
“So Joe Biden wants mothers to take babies into the mines in the Congo for the minerals for the electric vehicles that he is mandating that we drive here in the future.
“So what happens to these mothers and these babies?
“Well, they inhale toxic cobalt all day long. According to a United Nations report, 40,000 children are scavenging for cobalt in the Congo, for the electric vehicles, so China can sell us the chemicals that Joe Biden and the Democrats will not let us get out of the ground here in the United States.
“Most people would call this criminal. Women and children in Africa are inhaling toxic minerals so that the climate elites in San Francisco can drive their electric vehicles.
“Then there is the bloodshed and brutality that China uses to make solar panels. Joe Biden loves solar panels as much as he loves wind turbines. Well, there is a shortage of solar panels in this country right now.
“Why? Because of the law we passed 2 years ago to stop buying Chinese products made by forced labor.
“Well, solar panels require something called polysilicon. Nearly half of the world’s polysilicon is made now by forced labor in China.
“Democrats have to choose between their green energy fairy tales and upholding basic human rights. It seems like the church that they worship, the church of wind and solar and wishful thinking, is what they have chosen over human rights.
“I hope the Democrats agree with me that we should not make a green transition on the backs of forced labor. The Democrats seem to feel more guilt about burning oil than about solar panels being made by slave labor. It is hard to imagine.
“This is just another in a long line of Democrat delusions. As if this all weren’t enough, Joe Biden is even giving our tax dollars to China.
“Two weeks ago today, the Department of Energy announced that Joe Biden was sending another $1.6 million to a green energy company with ties to China.
“The company is called LanzaTech. It is a carbon capture company. Joe Biden has already given them $10 million. He gave them money right after they signed a partnership with China’s official energy company, Sinopec.
“This company, LanzaTech, has disclosed that `the Chinese Government may intervene or influence our operations at any time.” So let’s get this straight.
“Joe Biden is giving money to a company that says the Chinese Government “may intervene or influence our operations at any time.’
“What do we know about this company? Well, we know that it has some ties to the Democratic Party’s top donors–the top donors–the people who contribute to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, members of this body who go and ask them for more money.
“Who is on the board? Well, former President Obama’s campaign manager is a member of the board. Is this just a coincidence that, then, Joe Biden would move money, U.S. taxpayer dollars, to that company? Maybe it is not.”
On Biden Robbing the American People:
“If we want carbon capture, it should come to Wyoming. They don’t need to put money in these companies. We do it in Wyoming. We have a School of Energy Resources.
“We have a wonderful location. It is being done in the right way. They had a whole XPRIZE granted to the research being done at the University of Wyoming through the School of Energy
“The administration, it seems, when it comes to energy, would much rather go to China than go to the United States. That is Joe Biden’s view of the world right now.
“Wyoming is ready to do carbon capture better than anybody in the world. I am not sure why the administration turns to China rather than to America, just like I don’t know why they have gone to Iran, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, or Russia in the past for energy rather than in America.
“Joe Biden’s policies continue to rob the American people and pay off China. Joe Biden even sold 1 million barrels of oil from our emergency petroleum reserve to China.
“Then he said he was doing all of us a favor because he was going to bring down prices. This is a President who has been wrong and wrong and wrong.
“I have introduced legislation to ensure we never sell any of our emergency stockpile to China ever again. The House of Representatives has already passed legislation to do that.
“The legislation was actually bipartisan. It got 100 Democrats who voted for it. Why doesn’t Chuck Schumer bring it to the floor of the Senate today? Why not? Why isn’t he here?
“A hundred Democrats joined Republicans to say we shouldn’t do this. People in this body get it. The White House clearly doesn’t. The Department of Energy clearly doesn’t. The administration doesn’t.
“Joe Biden is held hostage by the far left of his party. Our Strategic Petroleum Reserve is for us, not for our enemies. America’s energy policy is supposed to be for us, not for our enemies.
“It is not what we have gotten from this president.
“Next week, I am going to introduce legislation to ban administration officials from going to work for China.
“For 2 years, Joe Biden has strangled American energy production; at the same time, he has made us more dependent on China for critical minerals and for so much of what this Nation needs.
“It is time for Joe Biden and the Democrats in this body to remember whom we work for, and that is the American people.”