Some energy industry groups are expressing concern that the White House will declare a COVID-19-like emergency—but for the climate instead.
“They’re leaning to that direction,” U.S. Oil and Gas Association President Tim Stewart told Just the News in an article published on July 30. “If you grant the president’s emergency powers to declare a climate emergency, it’s just like COVID.”
An emergency declaration on the climate could give the president “vast and unchecked authority to shut down everything from communications to infrastructure,” said Mr. Stewart, who has been a critic of the Biden administration.
Infrastructure around water and electricity could be affected by such a decision, he said.
“They can literally do exactly what they did in COVID,” Mr. Stewart said. “If you disagree with the climate emergency, [speech] can be shut down. We really need to be paying attention to that because that power could be extended indefinitely until the ‘climate emergency’ is over. Who knows how long that would last.”
The White House press office didn’t respond by press time to a request by The Epoch Times for comment about whether the administration might be preparing such a declaration.
President Joe Biden and other administration officials have said that the United States and the world are in the midst of a “climate crisis” and have used language describing it as an emergency. So far, Mr. Biden has stopped short of declaring an emergency, although some Democrats and environmental groups have pushed the idea.
About 60 congressional Democrats recently backed legislation known as the “Climate Emergency Act of 2021,” sponsored by Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), that would require the Biden administration to make a climate-related emergency declaration.
Last week, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres released an alarmist message saying that “the era of global warming has ended” and “the era of global boiling has arrived.” Using adjectives that included “terrifying,” Mr. Guterres said U.N. member states “must turn a year of burning heat into a year of burning ambition.”
A number of legacy media outlets, including the Los Angeles Times, have floated proposals such as purposefully implementing an “occasional blackout” to “help solve climate change.” A Guardian article published last week calls on the Biden administration to “declare a climate emergency” and states that it “must do so now.”