Fox News’ Peter Doocy interviewed John Kirby, National Security Council’s strategic communications coordinator, Monday about the decision by the Biden administration to allow Chevron to drill into Venezuela.
What’s the background?
The Biden administration granted Chevron, a California-based company, a license to reopen drilling operations in Venezuela over the holiday weekend.
The license is valid for six months. It requires that the Venezuelan regime continue good-faith negotiations to hold free and fair elections. This development represents a partial repeal of Trump-era sanctions. Top American leaders have made it clear that the sanctions will be re-instated if President Nicolas Maduro’s government violates its end of the agreement.
What has happened?
Doocy questioned Kirby at the White House press conference about the hypocritical nature Biden’s decision.
One, the approval of oil drilling in Venezuela seems to take away American oil companies. Those oil companies and the revenue they generate would benefit the U.S. on the other, why is Venezuelan drilling allowed if Biden wants oil drilling to be stopped because of climate change?
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“Why is it that President Biden would rather U.S. oil companies drill in Venezuela for oil than here in America?” Doocy asked the first question.
Kirby replied by saying that Doocy’s query is not an accurate reflection of the president’s views. To prove that it is Biden’s view, Doocy used Biden himself’s words, which he had earlier this month, when he said “no more drilling.”
Kirby, however, chose to ignore Doocy’s main point and instead regurgitated a debunked talk point that oil companies don’t use thousands of approved oil permits.
Kirby stated that the president had issued 9,000 permits to drill on U.S. federal land. However, 9,000 of these permits are currently being used.
“Does President Trump think that there is some benefit to drilling oil in Venezuela, but not here?” Doocy continued to follow up.
Kirby didn’t answer directly, but instead claimed that the development had “nothing to do” the climate, despite Democrats insisting that oil drilling has an impact on the climate.
“Again, there are 9000 unused permits here in America on federal land that oil companies can and should use — 9,000.” Kirby shook his head.
How many permits are there? Really?
Biden has not issued 9,000 permits to oil and gas drilling on federal lands. This number includes permits issued by Biden and former President Donald Trump.
However, it is false to assume that oil companies don’t use permits if they aren’t drilling immediately. The approval of a lease does not necessarily mean that the land on which it is granted will produce reliable oil.
However, if the land is suitable to oil production, companies must find, acquire and develop that oil. This requires more regulatory compliance.