Green Groups to Obama: Choose Climate Over Oil

President Barack Obama walks past an oil rig during his visit to oil and gas production fields located on federal lands outside of Maljamar, N.M., Wednesday, March, 21, 2012.   
National Journal
Ben Geman
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Ben Geman
Jan. 17, 2014, 2:57 a.m.

Ma­jor en­vir­on­ment­al groups are press­ing the White House to ditch its “all of the above” en­ergy ap­proach that backs ex­pan­ded do­mest­ic oil drilling along­side the green en­ergy sources that act­iv­ists em­brace.

The new polit­ic­al pres­sure — signaled in an open let­ter from more than a dozen groups — shows that en­vir­on­ment­al­ists be­lieve Pres­id­ent Obama’s care­fully cal­ib­rated en­ergy strategy isn’t weighted enough to­ward bat­tling cli­mate change.

“We be­lieve that con­tin­ued re­li­ance on an ‘all of the above’ en­ergy strategy would be fun­da­ment­ally at odds with your goal of cut­ting car­bon pol­lu­tion and would un­der­mine our na­tion’s ca­pa­city to re­spond to the threat of cli­mate dis­rup­tion,” states the let­ter re­leased Thursday even­ing.

Groups in­clud­ing the Si­erra Club, Earthjustice, the En­vir­on­ment­al De­fense Fund, the Na­tion­al Wild­life Fed­er­a­tion, the League of Con­ser­va­tion Voters, and the Nat­ur­al Re­sources De­fense Coun­cil signed the let­ter.

“We be­lieve that a cli­mate im­pact lens should be ap­plied to all de­cisions re­gard­ing new fossil fuel de­vel­op­ment, and urge that a ‘car­bon-re­du­cing clean en­ergy’ strategy rather than an ‘all of the above’ strategy be­come the op­er­at­ive paradigm for your ad­min­is­tra­tion’s en­ergy de­cisions,” the let­ter states.

The Wash­ing­ton Post first re­por­ted on the let­ter Thursday even­ing.

Green groups have wel­comed Obama’s second-term fo­cus on cli­mate change, which in­cludes car­bon-emis­sions stand­ards for power plants.

But they’re also wary of the White House ap­proach on al­low­ing drilling in Arc­tic wa­ters and oth­er policies.

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