McKinley Introduces Bill Banning Russian Energy Imports While Restoring American Energy Production

McKinley: Energy security is national security - it’s time to restore U.S. energy independence

Washington, D.C. — Congressman David B. McKinley, P.E. (WV-01) introduced a bill, the Regaining Energy Freedom and Undeniable Security and Preserving U.S. Trade Interests Now Act or REFUSE PUTIN Act, to ban Russian energy exports to the U.S., while at the same time, taking important steps to regain American energy independence.

Read more about the REFUSE PUTIN Act here.

“Energy security is national security. Following Russia’s deadly invasion of Ukraine, it has never been clearer: the U.S. must restore energy independence – now,” said Rep. McKinley. “The REFUSE PUTIN Act addresses both sides of President Biden’s foreign policy failures by not only banning Russian gas, oil and coal imports U.S., but also eliminating the arbitrary restrictions this Administration imposed on American energy producers.”

“On his first day in office, President Biden shut down the Keystone Pipeline and restricted energy production in America. American families are paying the price of the Biden Administration’s disastrous energy policy, with spiking gas prices costing families more than $4 a gallon, up 50 percent since last year,” said Rep. McKinley.

“President Biden’s anti-American energy policy means American dollars are supporting Putin’s attacks against the innocent people of Ukraine,” said Rep. McKinley.

“The solution is simple: stop subsidizing Putin’s war machine. Expand energy production, including coal, oil and gas, to restore American energy independence and enhance our ability to provide energy to our allies. We simply can’t continue to allow Russia to profit from its energy sales while Putin kills innocent civilians in Ukraine,” said Rep. McKinley.

“The U.S. bought nearly $20 billion worth of gas and oil from Russia last year and continues to purchase energy from Russia as it violently invades our ally Ukraine. It is absolutely wrong that the U.S. continues to purchase energy from Russia and line Putin’s pockets when we have the capability to produce energy right here in the US and provide our allies with an alternative to the growing Russian energy monopoly,” said Rep. Fred Upton (MI-06). "Let’s pull the carpet out from under Putin’s feet and cut Russian oil off while at the same time keeping energy costs low for Americans by using every tool in the tool box to increase domestic energy production.”

 

Cosponsors: Representatives Fred Upton (MI-06), Buddy Carter (GA-01) and Nancy Mace (SC-01).

 

BACKGROUND:

The U.S. now relies on Russian and other foreign countries to meet our energy demands, spending $17.5 billion on Russian petroleum imports in 2021.

THE REFUSE PUTIN ACT

Energy independence is critical to U.S. national security and the national security of its allies. On February 24, 2022, Vladimir Putin instructed Russian forces to invade Ukraine. This egregious attack had immediate ramifications on global energy prices. In fact, the price for a barrel of Brent crude oil immediately rose above $100 for the first time since 2014, and there are now fears of global energy shortages.

The U.S. Energy Information Agency recently estimated that the U.S. currently purchases about 700,000 barrels of oil from Russia daily. Those purchases are effectively funding Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

It is incumbent upon President Biden to prohibit the importation of any petroleum products from Russia and increase U.S. production to offset that fuel decrease to limit any impact that prohibition may have on the American public, especially at a time when inflation is at a 40-year high and energy prices are the highest they have been since 2008.

What’s in the bill:

  • Prohibition on the Importation of Petroleum and coal Products from Russia: Prohibits the importation of any petroleum products from Russia but provides an exemption for any ships that are being loaded or in transit to the U.S. with Russian fuel; and prevents the President from banning the export of crude oil from the U.S. while that prohibition is in effect.

  • Directs the President to repeal certain executive and secretarial orders and direct federal agencies and the Council on Environmental Quality to repeal any regulations that limit U.S. energy production and replace them with regulations that will enable increased production.

  • Increasing U.S. production for our allies by allowing the U.S. to increase exports to allies overseas, authorizing the Keystone XL pipeline, clarifying the use for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, and streamlining the licensing process for LNG exports.

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