Energy industry says Biden made US vulnerable to OPEC+ production cut: ‘Prices will rise’

Energy industry representatives are warning of price hikes after OPEC+ countries agreed to cut oil production by 2 million barrels a day. They also say that President Biden’s policy make the United States more vulnerable to such a decision.

“This is not good news for American families and businesses who are already struggling with record inflation,” Anne Bradbury, CEO of the American Exploration and Production Council, told FOX Business. “Oil, gas and refined products are all global commodities and all are valued in a global market.”

“When you reduce the supply from this global market, the laws of supply and demand mean prices will go up,” she said.

Tim Tarpley, senior vice president of government relations for the Energy Workforce and Technology Council, told FOX Business that the uncertainty caused by the OPEC+ production cut could be “greater than the actual number of barrels of oil they take off the market” and could lead to price increases.

OPEC+ MINISTERS AGREE TO CUT PRODUCTION BY 2M BARRELS A DAY

One solution to this uncertainty, Tarpley said, is for the United States to increase domestic production and reassure its allies. But he said Biden’s actions on energy, especially when he first took office, were leading the country in the wrong direction.

“It sent signals that the United States was not necessarily going to produce the resources that we have,” he said. “There are things we can do domestically to produce more oil and gas and to give our allies certainty and let them know, ‘Hey, we’re a reliable partner. … You don’t have to rely on OPEC+, you don’t have to rely on Russia.'”

Wesley Hunt, a Republican candidate for Congress in a Houston-based district who associates closely with the energy companies in his city, was more frank.

According to energy industry representatives, President Biden’s energy policies are to blame for the vulnerability of the United States to supply cuts by OPEC+. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, Pool, File/AP Newsroom)

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“When you play stupid games, you win stupid prizes,” Hunt told FOX Business. “We’ve cut the Keystone XL pipeline. We’re stifling our own growth. … And what’s going to happen to us here is you’re going to see prices go up.”

The White House on Wednesday touted Biden’s use of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to increase supply and its efforts to ask US energy companies to reduce prices.

“Under the President’s direction, the Department of Energy will deliver an additional 10 million barrels of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to market next month, continuing the historic releases the President ordered in March,” the adviser told National Security Jake Sullivan and National Economic Council Director Brian. Deese in a statement. “The President is also calling on U.S. energy companies to continue to drive down prices at the pump by closing the historically large gap between wholesale and retail gas prices.”

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President Joe Biden, left, is greeted by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, July 15, 2022. (Royal Court of Saudi Arabia/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images/Getty Images)

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But Hunt attacked Biden for a recent trip to Saudi Arabia ask that country to increase its oil production in an attempt to lower domestic gas prices – this effort appears to have failed.

“It’s a total slap in the face for our whole country,” Hunt said of OPEC+’s decision to cut oil production. “Everyone knows this is the weakest we’ve been in the last 40 years since Jimmy Carter. … This administration just isn’t credible. They literally don’t respect us.”

“We remain a little puzzled as to why the administration continues to ask foreign suppliers for additional supply while pursuing policies that make it more difficult to produce energy here in the United States,” Bradbury added.

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Prices at a gas station in Newfields, New Hampshire on May 2, 2022. (Fox News / Fox News)

American Petroleum Institute President Mike Sommers also attacked Biden for “urging foreign regimes to get more oil” because of increased US production. And Tarpley said Biden should have come to the Permian Basin in Texas to visit oil producers there instead of Saudi Arabia.

While it may take time for energy companies to increase production, Tarpley said a change as recent as the start of the Russian-Ukrainian war could have made the difference.

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“The administration is saying, ‘Well, if we took these steps, it would take so long for production to start…it’s not even worth trying. I reject that,” he said. “If we had taken positive action…when this real crisis started, we would have already seen significant increases in production.”

Average gas price in the United States are now $3.78 per gallon, according to the Energy Information Administration. That’s down from their peak of over $5 a gallon this summer, but still up from around $2.38 a gallon when Biden took office.

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