Putin uses revenues from oil sales to U.S. to fund war against Ukraine, other Russian human rights abuses
Washington, DC (March 1, 2022) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today announced he will introduce the Severing Putin’s Immense Gains from Oil Transfers (SPIGOT) Act, legislation to prohibit the importation of Russian oil and petroleum products into the United States. In 2021, the Russian Federation became the second-largest exporter of crude oil to the United States. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the United States imported approximately 245,000,000 barrels of oil from the Russian Federation in 2021, which would equal an estimated $17.4 billion in revenue to Russia. According to the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, 36 percent of all revenue of the government of the Russian Federation came from the oil and gas sector in 2021.
“American fossil fuel companies helped fuel Putin’s despicable war on Ukraine to the tune of billions, propping up the oil-garchs and cronies that keep him in power,” said Senator Markey. “There is no separating Russian oil from the corruption and human rights abuses of the Putin regime. We cannot criticize Europe for its reliance on Russian energy, as we pour dirty oil money into Russia. We cannot stop Putin with Russia’s gas in our cars. Our global addiction to oil keeps us locked into dangerous cycles of conflict and corruption, but we can choose a cleaner path to peace. By eliminating our addiction to Russian oil, we can build a pathway to a more prosperous and peaceful future, free from reliance on dirty oil and natural gas.”
A copy of the legislation can be found HERE. A copy of the one-pager can be found HERE
Specifically, Senator Markey’s SPIGOT Act:
- Prohibits all imports of Russian crude oil and petroleum products into the United States, in close coordination with appropriate congressional committees, subject to a Presidential national security waiver;
- Requires a report identifying the entities involved in the import of Russian crude oil and petroleum products into the United States, their links to President Vladimir Putin and other U.S. sanctioned individuals, an analysis of the risks these relationships pose in driving human rights abuses, and a comprehensive strategy to prioritize carbon free energy as an alternative to Russian crude oil and petroleum; and
- Requires the U.S. President to impose sanctions on individuals and entities under current legal authorities based on the findings of the aforementioned report.
Before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Senator Markey decried America’s addiction to Russian fossil fuels and called for a transition to clean energy, including passage of the $555 billion in clean energy and climate provisions of the Build Back Better Act.