WASHINGTON (.) – Nearly 75 U.S. lawmakers from President Joe Biden’s Democratic party on Tuesday praised his pause on approvals of exports of liquefied , or LNG, saying it would protect Americans from pollution and potential higher prices. Senators Jeffrey Merkley, Edward Markey and Representative Jared Huffman spearheaded a letter to Biden saying the pause allows the government to study whether the additional exports could saddle U.S. households and businesses with higher natural gas bills, boost climate changing emissions and lead to greater pollution in communities near LNG export plants. The pause on approvals of exports to countries with which Washington does not have a free trade agreement allows U.S. labs to study the effects of the booming business. WHY IT’S IMPORTANTIt’s the biggest show of support yet in Congress for the pause. Biden put a hold on reviews in January after environmentalists, an important part of his base, protested approvals for fossil fuel projects. The pause is expected to last through the Nov. 5 election. Republican opponents have called the pause politically motivated. Even a few Democrats have either opposed the move or said they would fight it if it hurts energy jobs. BY THE NUMBERSDespite the pause, the U.S. is still increasing LNG exports on prior approvals. An additional 48 billion cubic feet per day of exports have been authorized by the Energy Department, more than triple the current U.S. export capacity.The U.S. overtook Qatar and Australia last year to become the world’s top LNG exporter.3rd party Ad. Not an offer or recommendation . See disclosure here or
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.KEY QUOTES”With our allies well-supplied by existing exports, we agree that now is the time to step back and examine the long-term impacts that additional U.S. LNG exports will have on American consumers, industries, and the environment,” the lawmakers said.”This is an overdue opportunity to examine whether the LNG export boom creates value for the American people or, as we suspect, results in harm while primarily benefiting oil and gas companies that want to ship American LNG overseas for higher profits.” WHAT’S NEXTU.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm has said the study on LNG exports will be complete close to the end of this calendar year.