Energy Sec Had Secret Conversation With CCP Official Before SPR Release

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

There have been a lot of questions raised about how Joe Biden and his administration have dealt with China, particularly in light of the Biden family foreign business dealings scandal.

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As my colleague Andrew Malcolm has said, “He’s been remarkably passive given the increasing power and aggressiveness of Beijing’s Communist leaders.”

We’ve seen how weak Biden has been in response to all kinds of troubling actions from China, including spying on the U.S. — from the spy balloon to the most recent hacking of the U.S. Ambassador’s email account, as well as the accessing of accounts of other U.S. government officials.

Now there’s more troubling news about something that happened in 2021 – but we’re just finding out now.

Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm secretly contacted the Chinese government’s top energy official two days before the Biden administration announced they would be dipping into the Strategic Energy Reserve in 2021. This was after the gas prices began skyrocketing in part because of Biden’s bad energy policies.

The contact that Granholm had with the China National Energy Administration Chairman Zhang Jianhua had not previously been revealed and only came out because Americans for Public Trust were able to get a copy of the internal calendars of the Energy Department.

According to the calendars, Granholm spoke in one-on-one conversations with Jianhua, who is a longstanding senior member of the Chinese Communist Party, on Nov. 19, 2021, and two days later on Nov. 21, 2021. Then, on Nov. 23, 2021, the White House announced the release of 50 million barrels of oil from the SPR, the largest release of its kind in U.S. history at the time.

“Secretary Granholm’s multiple closed-door meetings with a CCP-connected energy official raise serious questions about the level of Chinese influence on the Biden administration’s energy agenda,” APT Executive Director Caitlin Sutherland told Fox News Digital.

“Instead of focusing on creating real energy independence for America, Granholm has been too busy parroting Chinese energy propaganda and insisting ‘we can all learn from what China is doing,’” Sutherland continued. “The public deserves to know the extent to which Chinese officials are attempting to infiltrate U.S. energy policy and security.”

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So why were they calling the CCP right before the release? They’re now claiming it was about climate change, and they’re denying the first listed call occurred. But they wouldn’t talk about what was said in the meeting they aren’t denying. So I trust that about as much as I trust Joe Biden walking up the stairs of Air Force One without tripping, which is to say not at all.

But it gets worse.

When the Biden team announced they were going to be swiping from our SPR (even if there wasn’t an emergency, just to help themselves politically), they claimed that “other major energy consuming nations including China” would have releases from their reserves as well. Biden himself said China “may do more as well,” and Granholm said during a press briefing that China “will make its own announcement.”

However, the Chinese, instead of taking from their reserves, have been building those reserves up. While Joe Biden has drained ours and weakened us, the Chinese have been strengthening theirs.

Republican leaders have warned that China, instead of releasing oil stocks, has increased its own reserves since Biden and Granholm’s announcement in November 2021. They have argued the SPR releases weakened U.S. national security and bolstered foreign adversaries’ “geopolitical leverage.”

“China ramped up its purchases of crude oil from Russia and the United States to boost its own reserves, even as oil prices surged and President Biden called for a coordinated release,” House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., and former GOP Rep. Fred Upton wrote to Granholm last year.

“As a result, China may now control the world’s largest stockpile of oil, with total crude inventories estimated at 950 million barrels,” they added.

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On top of it all, some of our Reserve was even sold to Chinese state-run companies, which is crazy, not only weakening ourselves but building up a hostile adversary.

According to the Fox report, the Biden team sold at least two million barrels of oil to Unipec, “an affiliate of the state-controlled China Petrochemical Corporation.” And guess who had a connection to that company? If you guessed the same guy who Granholm spoke to and the guy she also met with in 2021, Zhang Jianhua, you would be correct.

But it gets even more interesting. As I wrote last year about that sale, Unipec is the trading arm of the China Petrochemical Corporation. That company, which is commonly known as Sinopec, is wholly owned by the Chinese government, and Zhang Jianhua was connected to it for years.

As I wrote last year, Hunter Biden even had a tie-in to Sinopec. In 2015, Biden’s company BHR invested $1.7 million in Sinopec. In 2021, the GOP was raising questions about this tie-in and if Biden was still connected to BHR.

The Biden administration claimed the move would “address the pain Americans are feeling at the pump” and “help lower energy costs.” How does that even work if the oil is going to the Chinese? It’s not the American people it was helping.

The first such sale was part of a 20-million-barrel SPR sale awarded to eight companies in September 2021. The other two — both sales for 950,000 barrels of oil — came in April 2022 and July 2022, respectively.

“China is profiting from President Biden’s political abuse of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve,” Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Ranking member John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said earlier this year. “Meanwhile, America has become more vulnerable to true energy and national security emergencies.”

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So Biden has left us in the weakest position in decades in terms of the SPR. It’s at 346.8 million barrels — the lowest since August 1983.

He also released some from the reserves to help himself and the Democrats before the 2022 midterm elections to help bring down the prices that he had contributed to pumping up. But now, those prices are on the rise again anyway, and the Saudis are going to be continuing their cuts of 1 million barrels per day into September, despite the prior pleas from Joe Biden to the Saudis not to cut. And now he’s placed us at their mercy by harming our security and our energy independence.

I wrote previously that an increase was coming and how this was empowering the Chinese. “Changes are coming that have not happened for 100 years,” Xi Jinping said ominously. Unfortunately, that’s because we have Joe Biden at the switch.

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