White House climate envoy John Kerry attempted to reassure fossil fuel workers concerned about losing their jobs under President Joe Biden's climate change initiatives, saying those displaced could find "better choices" such as making solar panels.
What are the details?
During a news conference Wednesday on Biden's sweeping climate initiatives, Kerry was asked, "There certainly are oil and gas industry workers who are watching you both, right, who will hear the message that the take-away to them is that they are seeing an end to their livelihoods. What do you say to them? Particularly those people who President Trump struck a chord with on the campaign trail when he promised to save their jobs."
Kerry said Biden "has expressed in every comment he has made about climate the need to grow the new jobs that pay better, that are cleaner."
The Washington Examiner reported that Kerry noted "coal has been losing out to cleaner, cheaper fuels in recent years" and "that jobs installing solar panels and wind turbines were among the fastest-growing before the coronavirus pandemic slowed that momentum."
"What President Biden wants to do is make sure those folks have better choices, that they have alternatives," Kerry continued. "They could be the people who go to work to make the solar panels."
The climate official went on to say:
"Unfortunately, workers have been fed a false narrative. They have been fed the notion somehow dealing with climate is coming at their expense. No, it's not. What's happening to them is happening because of other market forces already taking place."
Also on Wednesday, Biden's nominee for Energy Secretary, former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D), acknowledged during a Senate confirmation hearing that some fossil fuel industry jobs "might be sacrificed" under Biden's plans, The Daily Wire reported.
"I think the president's plan of building back better...would create more jobs in energy, clean energy, than the jobs that might be sacrificed," Granholm said in response to a question about Biden's plan to suspend new drilling permits on federal lands.
She went on to add that she does not "want to see any jobs sacrificed."
The Biden administration has faced criticism in recent days after one of the president's numerous executive orders canceled the key contract for the Keystone XL pipeline — immediately leading to workers on the project being laid off.
Some unions that endorsed Biden in the 2020 election have since condemned him for revoking the pipeline construction permit.