Barrasso: John Kerry's phony climate accomplishments

The comparison by John Kerry of this month’s international climate carnival with the Constitutional Convention was preposterous (“COP26 prepared the world to beat climate change,” Wall Street Journal op-ed, Nov. 22).

The Biden administration’s commitments in Glasgow would cripple America’s economy, empower China and Russia and do little to address climate change. President Biden’s war on U.S. energy has already resulted in rising natural gas and gasoline prices and sent inflation to a 31-year high.

While the White House works to shut down U.S. energy production, our adversaries can emit at will. China’s emission-reduction target actually allows its emissions to increase until 2030. In 2019, China emitted more greenhouse gasses than the rest of the developed world combined.

The “significant” methane reduction agreement Mr. Kerry reached with China was little more than a regurgitation of old language. Meanwhile, Russia has had several massive methane leaks this year alone. That hasn’t stopped the president from pleading with Russia and the OPEC cartel to increase energy sales, even as he hamstrings cleaner U.S. production.

The administration simply opposes traditional American energy. While in Scotland, Mr. Kerry recklessly declared, “By 2030 in the United States, we won’t have any coal.” At a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing last week, however, Mr. Biden’s own Energy Department forecast that coal will continue to be critical part of our electricity mix for decades to come. Abundant U.S. coal, along with natural gas and oil, provide reliable and affordable energy. Mr. Kerry’s goals amount to unilateral American energy disarmament.

The only thing historic about the Glasgow conference was its cost and carbon footprint. COP26 resulted in an estimated 102,500 tons of carbon-dioxide emissions. That’s more than the annual emissions of some of the nations that participated.

America is already a world leader in carbon reduction. In 2019 our greenhouse-gas emissions were 14-percent lower than their 2004 peak. The reason? Free-market innovation, not regulation or lopsided global treaties. Thanks to America’s entrepreneurs and innovators, we live in an energy-independent republic. Will the Biden administration let us keep it?

Sen. John Barrasso, Republican of Wyoming, is the ranking member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.