With ban on Russian oil, US looks for new supplier

U.S.

(NewsNation) — The Biden Administration announced a ban on Russian oil, natural gas and coal imports earlier this week. And that means the US will need a new supplier for these resources.

But Russia is such a big player on the world stage that it could be difficult to replace them in the short term.

Some experts say the fastest way to get the most oil onto the global market is by tapping into Saudi Arabia, Iran and Venezuela’s supplies. These are all authoritarian regimes, though, which makes it politically awkward and difficult to have to rely on them to backfill the oil the West is now missing.

Just Saturday, the Saudi Arabian government announced it had executed 81 men, the largest mass execution in the country’s modern history. The Saudi Interior Ministry said those killed were charged with various terrorism-related crimes.

Republican lawmakers have been critical of the Biden administration for recent discussions about getting more oil from countries with similar regimes.

Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, R-N.Y., among other Republicans, told NewsNation that the administration needs to consider producing more American oil and gas.

“That to me is one of the greatest lessons that we should be learning right now from what we’re seeing in Europe, is that we cannot be beholden to adversaries,” she said.

But there are others who say more drilling in the U.S. is not the answer.

Senator Ed Markey, D-Mass., made the case Saturday at the Democratic National Committee’s conference that Russian aggression is exactly why the US should transition to renewable green energy. He called for the US to extend the oil and gas ban beyond Russia to other countries with regimes that engage in human rights abuses.

“It is time we tell Russia and Saudi Arabia that we do not need their oil any more than we need their caviar or their sand,” Markey said.

White House officials said that so far, there have been some meetings with Iran, Venezuela and Saudi Arabia, but no commitments made yet with any of those countries concerning buying or producing any more oil.

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