Texas Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian urged President Joe Biden to lift the federal moratorium on new liquified natural gas export projects to assist Ukraine.

Christian, citing a report last week by The Wall Street Journal’s Editorial Board, warned in a Tuesday letter that the LNG pause was hindering Ukraine’s capabilities at “a time when our allies need U.S. energy the most.”

“Ukraine’s deal for American LNG could be the leverage the West needs to gain an advantage over Putin by ending Europe’s reliance on Russian energy and depriving Putin of his primary revenue source to fund his unjust war,” stated Christian in a press release. “American fossil fuels can once again be the ‘hope of the free world’ – but only if Biden will let it.”

Although Christian’s letter specifically responds to reports of European and Ukrainian concerns, his ultimate request is that the administration reconsider its entire LNG export moratorium.

The Biden administration issued a temporary pause on pending approvals of LNG exports earlier this year, arguing that the Department of Energy’s current economic and environmental considerations were outdated and needed updating.

Around 20 countries—including Australia, Israel, and those in the United States’ North and Central American Free Trade Agreements—are excluded from the temporary pause. However, Ukraine remains one of the states subject to the new rules.

Ukraine’s status in the pause became especially relevant this month after DTEK, the country’s largest private energy company, struck a major deal with the U.S. LNG supplier Venture Global.

The deal means that DTEK’s subsidiary, D.TRADING, will be allowed to start purchasing LNG from Venture Global’s Plaquemines facility from later this year through 2026. In addition, the agreement stipulates that D.TRADING can purchase up to two million tonnes of gas for 20 years from the company’s in-progress CP2 facility.

Unfortunately, for Venture Global and Ukraine, the incomplete CP2 facility is stalled in its plans for full operation due to Biden’s LNG export pause. While optimistic, Venture Global acknowledged the roadblock.

“President Biden has committed to increasing LNG supply into Europe and Venture Global is pleased to be in a position to continue to support these efforts,” stated Venture Global CEO Mike Sabel. “With this landmark agreement, we will help bolster Ukraine’s security of natural gas supply, aid continued recovery and economic growth in the region, and further strengthen European energy security.”

The WSJ Editorial Board was less confident than Venture Global that CP2 would get approved. In their June 21 article, the board suggested that if Biden is re-elected, he will continue to present his “overriding loyalty to the climate lobby.”

“Biden officials have told allies not to worry and that the Administration’s permitting pause won’t have an immediate impact on U.S. LNG exports. But worry is appropriate,” wrote the board. “The moratorium has caused enormous political uncertainty about the future supply of U.S. gas.”

Luca Cacciatore

Luca H. Cacciatore is a journalist for Texas Scorecard. He is an American Moment inaugural fellow and former welder.