Kelly, Manchin, and Murkowski Lead Bipartisan Effort to Ban Russian Energy Imports
18 Bipartisan Senators Introduce the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act
Reps. Fitzpatrick and Gottheimer to introduce House companion bill
Today, U.S. Senators Mark Kelly (D-AZ), member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Joe Manchin (D-WV), Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) introduced the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act which would prohibit the importation of Russian crude oil, petroleum, petroleum products, liquified natural gas (LNG) and coal. They were joined by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Bob Casey (D-PA), Angus King (I-ME), John Tester (D-MT), Steve Daines (R-MT), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), and John Hickenlooper (D-MT). Representatives Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-1) and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ-5) will introduce companion legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives.
In 2021, the United States imported an average of 670,000 barrels of oil and petroleum products, with a high of 848,000 barrels per day in June 2021, with imports up 24% in 2021 over 2020. The U.S. has also imported Russian LNG and coal despite having some of the largest reserves domestically. This import strategy puts American national security at risk and supports Vladimir Putin’s ability to stay in power.
“We are a week into Russia’s illegal war against Ukraine, and Russian crude oil and other energy products continue arriving on American shores, fueling their war effort. The United States is not dependent on Russian fossil fuels, and the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act supports Ukraine by blunting one of Putin’s advantages: Russian energy production. I will continue working to increase domestic energy production and take additional steps so that American families don’t bear the cost of this conflict and have reliable, affordable energy options,” said Senator Mark Kelly.
“The entire world is on edge as Vladimir Putin terrorizes the sovereign democratic nation of Ukraine. The U.S. cannot continue to purchase more than half a million barrels of oil per day because in doing so, we are emboldening Putin to continue using his greatest weapon of war – energy exports,” said Chairman Manchin. “The Ban Russian Energy Imports Act would declare a national emergency with respect to Russian aggression and immediately prohibit the importation of Russian energy products. Importantly, this bipartisan bill shows our strong commitment to stand behind the valiant efforts of the Ukrainian people and the measures our allies in Europe are taking to rebuke Putin and his continued aggression. I urge Leader Schumer to quickly bring this bipartisan bill to the floor and urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support it.”
“The world is watching in shock as Russia wages an unprovoked war on Ukraine, killing innocents as it attempts to destroy a fragile democracy. While the Biden administration has taken noteworthy steps to try to convince Vladimir Putin and his regime to stand down, we need an all-encompassing approach that uses every viable tool at our disposal. By leaving Russia’s energy exports untouched, the United States is ignoring one of our most potent options to stop the bloodshed. We must ban Russia’s energy imports into the U.S. so that Americans aren’t forced to help finance their growing atrocities and halt the Russian aggression. I’m proud to sponsor this bill with Senator Manchin and urge the Senate to pass it immediately,” said Senator Murkowski.
The Ban Russian Energy Imports Act would:
- Declare a national emergency specifically with respect to the threat to our national security, foreign policy, and economy that exists as a result of Russian aggression against Ukraine and directs the President to prohibit imports of crude oil, petroleum, petroleum products, LNG, and coal from Russia.
- The President has had the authority to take these actions since 1917; this legislation does not grant additional authority. This approach is modeled on the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
- The ban would be in place during the national emergency and either the President or Congress would be able to terminate the emergency and the import ban.
- The bill exempts product that is already loaded or in transit at the time of enactment.
In the Senate, Kelly, a Navy combat veteran and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, has worked to lower energy costs and strengthen America’s national security. Kelly condemned Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, urging maximum sanctions on Putin and the Russian government. He successfully pushed President Biden to take immediate steps to bring down energy prices for Americans by authorizing coordinated releases of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Additionally, Kelly has urged Biden to sign his bill to suspend the federal gas tax through the end of the year.
To learn more about the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act, please click here.
To read the full text of the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act, please click here.