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Rep. Poe Makes Foreign Policy Case For Speeding Gas Exports

The congressman wants to counter Russia’s use of energy as a weapon.

Ted Poe
Rep. Ted Poe, R-TX

On the eve of a trip to Ukraine, Rep. Ted Poe, R-TX, said the U.S. needs to streamline the permitting of natural gas exports, in order to counter Russia’s use of energy as a weapon.

Speaking before a meeting of the Houston West Chamber of Commerce, Congressman Poe said the U.S. is now producing more gas than it can use. He said that, even with export terminals for liquefied natural gas still years away, the U.S. needs to find some way of shipping that excess overseas — for political reasons, as well as economic ones.

“Eastern Europe is held hostage by Gazprom, [the] Soviet, Russian gas company that provides most of the energy to Eastern Europe and a lot to Western Europe. It’s coming from one monopoly source, Russia.”

The congressman noted the Kremlin has cut or halted natural gas shipments to Ukraine repeatedly over the past decade in the wake of political disputes, including once when he himself was visiting the country. Poe departs for Eastern Ukraine Sunday, as part of the first congressional delegation to visit the region since Russia’s annexation of Crimea.

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media’s coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media’s business reporter, covering the oil...

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