Memo from Trump's energy transition leader could yield hints at future policy
- The Center for Media and Democracy says it has obtained a memo sent by the head of President-elect Donald Trump's energy transition team that could provide insight into the next administration's policies, including scrapping the Clean Power Plan and increasing federal oil, gas and coal leases.
- According to the left-leaning CMD, several days before American Energy Alliance President Thomas Pyle was named head of Donald Trump's energy transition team, he sent a memo outlining what he expected from the incoming administration.
- And The Los Angeles Times reports that in the days before he was appointed to the transition role, Pyle tweeted he expected “a reset of a generation of failed energy and environmental policies," though neither he nor the Trump campaign confirmed the memo's authenticity.
Pyle and the American Energy Alliance have been vocal critics of President Obama's efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and so it is unclear whether the memo CMD obtained is a wish list or reflects insider knowledge of Trump policies.
But according to the memo, Trump has "promised to hit reset on the most harmful parts of the Obama climate agenda, including the Paris Agreement and the so-called 'Clean Power Plan.' He has also vowed to open up more federal areas for energy exploration and development."
"In short, the Trump administration could replace the Obama administration's harmful pol¡cies with ones that restore power and choice back to where they belong-with the American people," Pyle's memo read.
Pyle also leads the Institute for Energy Research and is a former lobbyist for Koch Industries, according to the LA Times. Other points in the memo include: giving states greater say over leasing on federal lands within their borders; moving ahead with pipeline infrastructure, and expediting approvals of liquefied natural gas export licenses.
Trump has said he will roll back what he sees as excessive and costly regulations on the energy sector, and has vowed to nix the Clean Power Plan. But transition-team insiders have also indicated he has no plans to attack renewable energy.
That would seem to be at odds with Pyle's memo, which also notes "taking a closer look at the environmental impacts of wind energy" as a possible policy change. He wrote that Trump has been concerned with bird and bat deaths and "wind energy will rightfully face increasing scrutiny from the federal government."
At this point it may be impossible to say what energy policy will look like: The New York Times reports Trump met with climate activist and former Vice President Al Gore yesterday at Trump Tower in New York City, giving climate activists hope.
- Los Angeles Times Trump brings Koch network's green-energy foes from the fringe to the center of power
- Center for Media and Democracy Revealed: The Trump administration's energy plan
- American Energy Alliance A Blueprint for America’s Comeback
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