The US may consider waivers from a ban on financing fossil fuel projects abroad


The US may consider waivers from a ban on financing fossil fuel projects abroad 

A senior US official declared that the Biden administration might soon consider calls for waivers from a ban on financing new carbon-intensive fossil fuel projects abroad as energy markets tighten due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

President Joe Biden in December ordered US agencies to stop funding coal, gas, and other projects immediately and prioritize global cooperation to spread clean energy technology.

The order introduced exemptions if the state faced severe consequences if it could not build a plant to burn fossil fuels, such as natural gas or coal.

A senior US official told reporters on condition of anonymity that he doubted that there would be situations in which some officials would be willing to invoke the provision in the coming months. 

Any exceptions to the order could underscore how the Russian invasion forced the Biden administration to balance priorities in tackling climate change with energy security, including requiring domestic oil producers to boost production and open up the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

The invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which usually supplies about 40% of the European Union's natural gas and about 27% of its oil, intensified the global energy crisis. The European Union is trying to wean itself off imports, and traders fear Russia will use energy as a weapon by restricting shipments to international markets.

Suppose the United States will ultimately help fund any new fossil fuel projects overseas. In that case, the country will have to show it is on track to reduce the overall emissions of its economy, the official said.

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