Lauren Boebert Rails Against Joe Biden's 'Unlawful' Fossil Fuel Freeze

Rep. Lauren Boebert has harshly criticized President Joe Biden's decision to pause oil and gas leasing on federal lands and waters as part of a drive to fight climate change.

The newly elected Republican, who represents Colorado's 3rd congressional district, said the administration's fossil fuel policies would cost American jobs and were appeasing "environmental extremists."

Boebert pointed out that about 44 percent of the natural gas produced in Colorado comes from her district. Other members of Congress from similarly fossil fuel-dependent communities have made similar arguments.

"Blocking future oil and gas leases on 700 million acres is an unlawful attack on the livelihoods of the people in my district," Boebert said in a statement on Wednesday.

"COVID lockdowns have created enough unemployment and economic challenges without Joe Biden delivering more pink slips to thousands of Coloradans.

"People are losing everything they have and the only thing this president cares about is appeasing extremist environmentalists. While the Biden administration pretends big oil is its target, the reality is it's the folks in small rural communities that will be hit hardest by today's indefinite moratorium."

Biden has now blocked new oil and gas leases on 700 MILLION ACRES of land!

America has the highest environmental standards in the world & if we aren't the ones developing these resources other countries will.

— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) January 27, 2021

"The U.S. has the highest environmental standards in the world and if we aren't responsibly developing these resources in America, then other countries will take these jobs and develop dirtier resources," she said.

The Environmental Performance Index of nations, which is compiled by Yale and Columbia universities, ranked the U.S. 24th in the world in 2020, far behind other industrialized nations.

The U.S. was ranked 15th on climate change and is currently the second largest contributor to climate change after China. Former President Donald Trump rolled back many environmental regulations.

Boebert reiterated her comments on Twitter on Wednesday, saying: "With the stroke of a pen, President Biden has killed jobs, reduced funding for local schools, and broken the law."

She introduced a bill last Thursday aimed at blocking Biden's executive order to rejoin the Paris climate agreement. The bill is unlikely to advance in the Democrat-controlled House.

"These Paris climate accords, this is unconstitutional," Boebert said. "It needs Senate ratification to enter into a treaty like this."

Boebert's claim that the president needs Senate approval may not have legal weight. Former President Barack Obama signed up to the agreement by executive order and Trump left it by the same method.

The Biden administration has said its policies will create new jobs as the nation moves toward solutions to climate change.

"We're not going to lose jobs in these areas; we're going to create jobs," Biden said on Wednesday.

Colorado Rep. Lauren Boebert
Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, pictured in Washington, D.C. on November 12, 2020. She has criticized President Joe Biden's environmental policies. Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images