Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump is not only invested in the fossil fuel industry he is seeking to expand its role in American energy production.
Coal is among the dirtiest sources of energy, as a consequence coal plants and mining operations are being shut down in the US and around the world. Against this backdrop Trump is promising a revival of the American coal industry.
On Thursday May 5th, Trump was endorsed by the West Virginia Coal Association. Trump donned a miners hat and touted the virtues of coal in front of a supportive crowd of more than 10,000 at the Charleston Civic Center. He was joined on stage by Coal Association Vice President Chris Hamilton. Trump said that he plans to help coal miners by weakening regulations.
“If they didn’t have ridiculous regulations that put you out of business and make it impossible for you to compete, I’m going to take that off,” Trump said to loud cheers. “You are going to be proud of me.”
In Trump’s book, Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again, he supports drilling for oil and fracking while deriding sustainable sources of energy. He points to America’s abundant oil and gas reserves and believes it should be developed. He attacks climate change and renewable energy, he opposes carbon pricing and want to eviscerate the EPA.
If Trump thinks America is crippled now, wait until he is President of the United States. Yes he can bring in outside expertise, but judging by the caliber of people he is currently surrounding himself with, that does not give us much reason to hope.
Trump may love the oil industry but the feeling is not reciprocated. If the voting record is any indication Trump is not popular in oil country. He did not win any primaries in oil states. It would appear that oil billionaires and others see him as unelectable.
However, now that Trump is the only Republican left standing fossil fuel interests will be eager to try and “educate” him. Paul Ryan may not be willing to support Trump today, but like the oil industry he will in the end.
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