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Trump to Overhaul US Energy Strategy


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President Donald Trump signs an executive order to create energy independence at the Environmental Protection Agency headquarters in Washington, D.C. (Official White House Photo by Jonathan Gallegos)

 

U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order on energy independence Tuesday, March 28, that will re-evaluate former President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) and lift the ban on federal leases for coal production.

“The action I am taking today will eliminate federal overreach, restore economic freedom and allow our companies and workers to thrive, compete and succeed on a level playing field for the first time in a long time,” President Trump said.

Trump added that he was making good on a campaign promise he made: to put miners back to work by ending the “war on coal.”

“With today’s executive action, I am taking historic steps to lift the restrictions on American energy, to reverse government intrusion and to cancel job-killing regulations,” he said.

According to a senior administration official, the administration will provide the framework, or the beginning framework for a strategy on energy, such that each executive department and agency in the United States government will be responsible for identifying all regulations, all rules, all policies, guidance documents that serve as obstacles or impediments to domestic energy production.

“President Trump’s Energy Independence Executive Order, which, among other things, announces the coming end to the CPP, is a crucial win for Texas and the nation,” said Michael Nasi, general counsel of Balanced Energy for Texas. “An illegal attempt to force states to accommodate an ideological environmental agenda, the CPP represented federal overreach at its worst, threatening to destabilize the Texas electricity market, impose a heavy burden on ratepayers, negatively affect the economy and undermine states’ control of their own electricity generation markets. It was all pain for virtually no environmental gain.”

Likewise, Murray Energy applauded the action. It was one of the first parties to file a lawsuit challenging the Clean Power Plan, which is currently pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. The attorneys general from 29 states also determined that this CPP was illegal, and joined this litigation. On February 9, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed with its arguments and issued a nationwide stay of the Clean Power Plan, in the lawsuit led by Murray Energy.

“We are extremely pleased that President Trump has, once again, followed through on his promise to preserve coal jobs and low cost electricity in the United States,” said Robert E. Murray, chairman, president and CEO of Murray Energy.