March 7, 2024

Collin Rees,
Seth Gladstone,

560+ U.S., International Groups Applaud Biden’s LNG Permitting Pause, Urge Further Action

Letter calls on the Biden administration to expand pause beyond Department of Energy and stop all pending LNG exports and fossil fuel infrastructure

WASHINGTON, DC — A letter delivered today to U.S. President Joe Biden from more than 560 environmental, climate, health, and advocacy organizations around the world applauded the administration’s decision to halt pending liquefied natural gas (LNG) export approvals to non-free trade countries and called on the administration to expand the pause to halt the permitting of new LNG infrastructure and export projects across all federal agencies and commissions. The letter was facilitated by Oil Change International, Food & Water Watch, Frack Action, and Healthy Gulf.

The letter also calls on the U.S. Department of Energy, as part of its review, to institute a broad and inclusive democratic process with public hearings and a comment period that allows for and empowers the voices of frontline communities, the scientific community, environmental advocates, economists, health professionals, Tribal governments, elected officials, business leaders and concerned individuals.

The letter reads, in part: “While the pause in Department of Energy approvals is needed and welcome, it is important to recognize that without further action from your administration, gas exports in the United States are projected to nearly double by 2035. Further, there are other permits pending with a litany of federal agencies for LNG export projects and related infrastructure. These include the Environmental Protection Agency, Coast Guard, Department of Transportation and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission… It makes no sense to halt LNG on one hand and advance it with the other. All permits for new LNG and related infrastructure should be rejected.

The letter concludes: “We appreciate your recent halt to the Department of Energy’s LNG approvals. Now, as we face ever worsening climate impacts, we implore you to stand firm, follow the science, let the voices of the public be heard, and direct all federal agencies to stop all pending LNG exports and fossil fuel infrastructure now.”

Signatories on the letter include many international, national, youth, and frontline organizations from around the world and the United States, such as Friends of the Earth,, Greenpeace, U.S. Climate Action Network, Sunrise Movement, Fridays For Future, and the Indigenous Environmental Network. 

“Along the Gulf of Mexico, our coastal communities continue to call attention to the extreme harm perpetuated by the oil and gas industry, especially as it relates to the rapidly growing threat of liquified methane gas export terminals. We don’t need more destruction of wetlands for these terminals or more pollution and other safety risks to our nearby residents, and we certainly don’t need to be expanding our dependence on fossil fuels,” said Martha Collins, Executive Director of the regional nonprofit Healthy Gulf. “It’s high time we see the administration take bold action to protect our communities, our environment, and way of life. The pause was just a first step, and we are honored to see nearly 600 other groups around the world that feel the same.”

“While on the campaign trail in 2020, President Biden looked our generation in the eye and promised he would ‘end fossil fuel’ — yet here we are, four years later. What have we seen? Record flooding, record wildfires, record heat, and record fossil fuel approvals from this administration,” said Keanu Arpels-Josiah, 18-year-old organizer with Fridays For Future NYC and a lead organizer of the March To End Fossil Fuels. “The generation that elected this so-called climate president is sick and tired of false promises from his administration. That’s why we took to the streets in September and it’s why we now call on President Biden to extend the LNG pause, declare a climate emergency, and allow for meaningful public input from his constituents. Our lives — our futures — are on the line.” 

“Asian countries, including Japan, do not need U.S. LNG. The widely publicized LNG demand growth in Southeast Asia is fueled by artificial demand that Japan is trying to create for its own vested corporate interest in keeping fossil fuel infrastructure alive,” said Hiroki Osada, Development Finance & Environment Campaigner at Friends of the Earth Japan. “Japan has been extremely slow to transition away from fossil fuels, but the Biden decision is a decisive signal that could change this course, and we need more of it. It’s time to say ‘Sayonara’ to LNG.” 

“More and more Europeans every day are standing up against fracked gas imports from the United States. While European demand for gas has decreased by about 20 percent in recent years, import volume continues to mushroom. President Biden’s initial LNG pause is a good start, but it must be made permanent and it must be expanded,” said Frida Kieninger, Director of E.U. Affairs at Food & Water Europe. “On both sides of the Atlantic, we need a check on destructive LNG hype that’s trampling on human rights and our climate.” 

Read the full letter: