JUST IN: 16 US states challenge Biden admin freeze on new LNG export approvals

16 US states challenge Biden admin freeze on new LNG export approvals

16 US states challenge Biden admin freeze on new LNG export approvals

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Cranes are seen near the construction site of the Venture Global LNG plant next to the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish south of New Orleans, Louisiana.
: ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP
Source: AFP

Texas and 15 other US states filed a on Thursday challenging the Biden administration's freeze on new liquefied natural gas exports.

Citing the climate crisis, Democratic President Joe Biden in January paused the granting of new permits to ship LNG .

“This pause on new LNG approvals sees the climate crisis for what it is: the existential threat of our time,” Biden said at the time.

The only began exporting LNG in 2016 but rapidly became the 's biggest supplier, driven in part by turning away from Russian gas following its invasion of .

Texas, the leading US producer of crude oil and natural gas, and 15 other Republican-led states filed a lawsuit in a federal in Louisiana on Thursday opposing the move.

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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton denounced what he called the Biden Administration's “unlawful and indefinite ban on approving applications to export liquified natural gas.”

“Biden's unilateral decree disregards statutory mandates, flouts the legal process, upends the oil and gas industry, disrupts the Texas economy, and subverts our constitutional structure,” Paxton said in a statement.

The ban on new LNG export approvals comes as Biden looks to shore up youth voters energized by environmental issues in a tough White rematch.

He will likely Republican candidate Donald Trump, who calls human-caused global warming a “hoax” and has vowed to torpedo his Democratic opponent's climate agenda.

Under the Biden plan, new LNG export applications would be subject to a review of unspecified length that considers climate and wider environmental and economic impacts.

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It would imperil the future of more than a dozen planned export facilities.

Scientists and environmental activists welcomed the review — which excludes plants already approved but not yet built, and has exceptions for national security emergencies.

Source: AFP

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