By Sarah Lazare
In These Times
Just as scientists warn we must drastically shift away from fossil fuel extraction, the Biden administration is pressing for more oil production.
As Russian President Vladimir Putin escalates his horrific invasion of Ukraine, in which civilians are being mowed down as they attempt to flee to safety, the Biden administration is now arguing that the United States can counter Putin’s aggression by pursuing more oil production, both domestically and among U.S. allies. Citing increased production as a path to more “energy security,” President Biden has also retreated from any robust discussion of tackling climate change — an orientation that shows how war can harden reactionary, short-sighted politics across the globe. Just as the world’s top scientists warn in a dire new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that we must dramatically curb fossil fuel extraction, political leaders are allowing for even less breathing room to discuss an existential threat that could kill hundreds of millions of people, and make large swaths of the globe uninhabitable.
Biden’s climate rhetoric is undermined by the US strong-arming developing nations who demand climate “The climate crisis is happening faster, more widespread, and more intensely than scientists originally predicted,” says Adrien Salazar, policy director for Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, a social movement organization. “And we are in a period where any further delay means death, as UN Secretary General António Guterres said.”