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As Manchin Pulls Back on Climate Legislation, Groups Urge Biden Administration to Uphold Climate Commitments by Finalizing a Five-Year Plan with No New Offshore Leases
(WASHINGTON, DC) – In light of yesterday’s news that Senator Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) is ready to walk away from a reconciliation package containing historic investments in climate action, a key pillar of President Biden’s agenda, groups from across the climate movement are calling on the Biden administration to achieve protections for climate, communities, and public health through executive action and federal agencies, including by ensuring the Department of Interior finalizes a Five-Year Program that contains no new offshore drilling leases.
In response to the news, Earthjustice, Friends of the Earth, League of Conservation Voters, Chispa LCV, Healthy Gulf, the Healthy Ocean Coalition, Oceana, Rachel Carson Council, and Sierra Club released the following joint statement:
“The unwillingness of Senator Manchin and every single Republican Senator to pass a reconciliation package that includes needed climate action shows that they would rather deliver for the fossil fuel industry than ensure a livable climate for ourselves and future generations. Budget reconciliation is one critical component of President Biden’s bold climate agenda. It’s more important than ever for President Biden and the Department of Interior to finalize a Five-Year Program that contains no new offshore drilling leases. The climate impact of permanently ending new leasing could be the equivalent of taking every car in the country off the road for 15 years. Communities in the Gulf and Alaska see offshore drilling for what it is: a menace to public health, a constant threat to their local economies and livelihoods, and a major driver of the extreme heat, superstorms and flooding that are destroying the places where they live. President Biden must make good on his campaign promises by taking this first major step to put offshore drilling in the past. This is progress his administration can make on its own, and we do not have any more time to waste tackling the climate crisis.”