"U.S. Approves $500 Million for Bahrain Oil Project, Despite Opposition"

"The financing faced criticism that it doesn’t mesh with U.S. commitments on climate change. Earlier, two climate advisers had resigned over the plan."

"A federal bank that finances projects overseas voted Thursday to put $500 million toward an oil and gas project in Bahrain, a transaction that critics said was out of step with President Biden’s climate commitments.

Just days before the vote, six lawmakers had urged the bank, the Export-Import Bank of the United States or ExIm, not to move ahead with the financing, given the project’s negative effects on the climate. “We cannot afford to have ExIm undermine domestic and international climate progress,” lawmakers led by Senator Jeff Merkley, Democrat of Oregon, said in a letter to the bank’s board of directors last week.

The bank said that the financing, in the form of loan guarantees, was consistent with its mission to bolster American exports and jobs. The new drilling in Bahrain could mean lucrative contracts for American engineering and construction-management firms, the bank said. The project will include measures to keep greenhouse gases in check, it said in a statement."

Hiroko Tabuchi reports for the New York Times March 14, 2024.

Source: NYTimes, 03/19/2024