Today, the American Petroleum Institute (API) sent a rambling 30-page letter touting its “Climate Action Framework” to Interior Secretary Deb Haaland. Additionally, the document, sent from a former Trump administration official who helped gut environmental protections, makes the bizarre claim that API wants to work with the Biden administration to reform federal oil leasing “to address climate considerations,” while cynically calling for an end to the administration’s pause on new leases during the review period. 

In response, government watchdog Accountable.US released the following statement and reality check (full details available here): 

“API just sent a rambling, 30-page letter to the Biden administration from a former Trump official disingenuously claiming it wants to work with the new President to address climate change while simultaneously representing some of the biggest polluters in the world. We are through the looking glass,” said Kyle Herrig, president of Accountable.US. “All of the gimmicks and PR makeovers in the world can’t erase API’s decades-long record of denying climate science and fighting meaningful efforts to address the climate crisis. They simply cannot be trusted.” 

The letter was written by Kevin O’Scannlain, an oilman whose most recent trip through the special interest revolving door included a stint in the Trump administration where he worked to gut environmental protections.  


RHETORIC: API’s Letter Pushes Alternative Ways To Combat Climate Change While Still Relying On Fossil Fuels 

  • REALITY: “Clean” Alternatives Lack Clear Scientific Evidence About Their Efficacy, With API Itself Acknowledging The Tech For Net-Zero Isn’t There (Full Details
  • REALITY: API’s Plan Continues Our Reliance On Fossil Fuels, Ignoring All The Associated Health And Environmental Risk (Full Details

RHETORIC: API Claims To Support Mitigating Emissions And Reducing Flaring And Methane 

  • REALITY: API Praised Trump For Slashing Methane Regulations – A Gas Responsible For A Quarter Of All Man-Made Global Warming (Full Details
  • REALITY: API Has Repeatedly Fought For Lower Emissions Standards And Blocked Regulating Agencies (Full Details)

RHETORIC: API Says It Will Promote Reductions In Flaring

  • REALITY: API Member Companies Have Already Pledged To Reduce Their Flaring, But Flaring Continues To Increase (Full Details

RHETORIC: API’s Plan Supports Carbon Pricing 

  • REALITY: API Is Proposing An Exchange – Carbon Pricing For Their Long-Term Goal Of Deregulation (Full Details
  • REALITY: API Is Reversing Its Opposition Only After Pressure And Division Within Its Ranks (Full Details

RHETORIC: API Supports “Cleaner Fuels” By Positioning Gas As A Better Alternative To Coal 

  • REALITY: API Has Opposed Climate-Friendly Policies While Attempting To Position Itself As Environmentally Friendly (Full Details
  • REALITY: Oil And Gas Companies Still Emit Huge Amounts Of Greenhouse Gases With Natural Gas Polluting More Than Coal In 2019 (Full Details

RHETORIC: API Supports Emissions Reductions In The Transportation Sector 

  • REALITY: API Has Praised Rollbacks To Transportation Fuel Standards (Full Details

RHETORIC: API Improved ESG Reporting And Improved Internal Emissions Methodologies For The Industry  

  • REALITY: ESG Reporting Can Lead To Companies Looking Cleaner Without Helping The Environment And API Has Been Suspicious Of Biden’s Proposals To Help Solve The Problems. (Full Details
  • REALITY: API Already Has Its Own Methodology And Standards That Haven’t Stopped Its Companies From Committing Major Environmental Violations (Full Details

Get All The Details 


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