US Policy Changes Vol.27 (Energy Vol.3 – Key posts, the Environment)

Here are articles on energy and the environment. Excerpts are on my own.

Trump’s cabinet could change the face of U.S. energy policy (12/15/2016) | @DanielBush @NewsHour
… Under his tenure, the departments of the Interior, Energy, State and the Environmental Protection Agency pushed plans to grow wind and solar power…
…Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, Trump’s pick to head EPA…
In a National Review column co-authored with Luther Strange, Alabama’s attorney general, Pruitt wrote that the evidence linking human activity to climate change was “far from settled.” …
Freshman Rep. Ryan Zinke, Trump’s pick to lead the Interior Department…
In Congress, Zinke has backed the Land and Water Conservation Fund, a federal program that protects public lands and water. But he received a score of three percent — out of 100 — from the League of Conservation Voters for his voting record on environmentally-friendly legislation. …
… Last month, ExxonMobil came out in support of the Paris climate agreement, an ambitious deal to curb global greenhouse gas emissions reached by 195 countries. …
…a lawsuit from the attorneys general of New York and Massachusetts claiming the company hid and deceived investors over decades about the dangers of climate change. …
During his tenure as governor of Texas from 2000 to 2015, Perry oversaw an expansion of oil and gas development. But under Perry the Lone Star State also became the country’s leading wind power developer…
…his position on climate change is unambiguous. Perry — who ran for president in 2012 and again in 2016 — has consistently questioned the existence of climate change. …
Perry’s main task at the Energy Department would be overseeing the county’s nuclear weapons, storage and scientific research programs. But Perry would have a hand in energy policy as well…
…he would take over an agency he vowed to eliminate during a disastrous 2012 debate performance that sunk his presidential ambitions. Perry said he would cut three federal agencies. He listed Commerce and Education, but couldn’t remember Energy.

U.S. oil industry cheers Trump energy pick, seeks gas export boost (12/15/2016) | @reuters
…and wasted no time making its first specific request of him: to support increased exports of America’s natural gas overseas.
Jack Gerard @API_News…
The United States exported its first cargo of liquefied natural gas earlier this year from an export facility on the Gulf Coast, but the industry has complained that boosting exports to match global demand has been constrained by a slow and opaque bureaucratic process.
U.S. energy exports have long been a contentious political issue, dividing lawmakers seeking to balance the benefits of low consumer prices at home and American energy independence against opportunities for companies to expand access to potentially lucrative foreign markets.
… An overwhelming number of scientists say carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels contributes to changes to the climate that are leading to sea level rise, droughts and more frequent violent storms.
Trump’s transition team said Perry’s tenure leading Texas, the nation’s second most populous state and a major producer of oil, gas and wind power, from 2000 until 2015 made him a strong pick for energy secretary.
… After his tenure as Texas governor, Perry joined the board of directors of Energy Transfer Partners, a Texas-based company building the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota that has been stalled by protests by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and supporters.

It’s complicated: As head of the EPA, Scott Pruitt will run an agency he sued at least 13 times (12/9/2016) | @taydolven @vicenews
… “I’ve been racking my brain to come up with something,” said @sethdavis50 @ABAEnvLaw. “I’m not saying there aren’t any cases, but I have not thought of one.” …
@jacklienke @PolicyIntegrity @nyulaw… “It’s not that uncommon in our nation’s history for someone from the industry that an agency regulates to be appointed to head that agency. …
…the Defense of Marriage Act… Bill Clinton signed into law despite his criticism that it was unnecessary and divisive.
…@LungAssociation @nationalgridus…

RYAN ZINKE, DONALD TRUMP’S PICK FOR INTERIOR SECRETARY, AND THE RISING AMERICAN LAND MOVEMENTS (12/16/2016) | @benwallacewells @NewYorker
… In this year’s election, Hillary Clinton won just under five hundred of America’s roughly three thousand counties. But those five-hundred-odd counties were populous enough that she received the most votes cast for President; even more striking, as @washingtonpost’s @jimtankersley found, those few Clinton counties are responsible for more than two-thirds of national G.D.P. …
…oversee the management and use of roughly a fifth of the land in the United States.
… The two movements shared a spiritual investment in the land, and a conviction that the federal government both misunderstood its proper uses and was diverting its worth to distant people. …
…the Army Corps of Engineers agreed to consider alternate sites for the Dakota Access Pipeline… But Trump’s spokesman has said that the President-elect favors the pipeline, and executives at the company building it, Energy Transfer Partners, have been optimistic about the fate of their project under the new Administration. …

Trump Picks Exxon’s Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State (12/13/2016) | @blkahn @climatecentral
… Historically, oil and gas produced by ExxonMobil are responsible for causing 3.2 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions to date. …
Tillerson has acknowledged climate change is occurring and driven by carbon pollution. Earlier this year, he told the U.S. Energy Association that, “At ExxonMobil, we share the view that the risks of climate change are serious and warrant thoughtful action.”
In the past, however, he has questioned… “I’m not disputing that increasing CO2 emissions in the atmosphere is going to have an impact,” …
…the unstoppable melt of the West Antarctic ice sheet which would raise seas 10 feet — that are harder to model. But scientists have said that that uncertainty is no reason to ignore tipping points, but rather a reason to take them all the more seriously and act on climate change.
“Addressing (climate change) effectively in concert with countries around the globe will be a central responsibility of the next secretary of state,” said @FredKrupp @EnvDefenseFund…

Trump’s energy and environment team leans heavily on industry lobbyists (9/29/2016) | @StevenMufson @washingtonpost
…@IOMcGehee @CampaignLegal…
The head of Trump’s energy transition team is Mike Catanzaro… a partner at the lobbying firm CGCN…
…Halliburton… …Devon Energy, Encana Oil & Gas, Hess and Noble Energy; Talen Energy…; …American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers; and Koch Industries.
…Jeffrey Wood, a partner at Balch & Bingham…
Andrew R. Wheeler, a lawyer… currently works for FaegreBD Consulting where his leading lobbying client is Murray Energy…
…Stephen Moore… “We can be the next Saudi Arabia for the next century.”
…Myron Ebell, head of energy and environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. …
…Mike McKenna, who is president of the firm MWR Strategies and who worked for both the Energy and Transportation departments. McKenna has lobbied on behalf of Dow Chemical, Koch Industries, Southern, GDF Suez and TECO Energy.
…David Longly Bernhardt, the former solicitor general of the Interior Department under Bush and a partner at the law firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck. …

Trump victory reverses U.S. energy and environmental priorities (w Videos; 11/9/2016) | @StevenMufson,@brady_dennis @washingtonpost
… “It sure looks a whole lot friendlier than it would have under… President Clinton,” Stephen Brown, vice president of government relations for the oil refiner Tesoro…
…Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club. “Trump is now, as president-elect, soon to be the only head of state on the planet that doesn’t believe…
…Bill McKibben, founder of the climate action group 350.org… …it’s clear that he wants no part of environmental progress…
…when faced with the election of President Bush, the environmental community utilized the courts, the Senate filibuster, watch-dogged political appointees and galvanized the public to take action,” Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth…
Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters… …vowing that the community would continue to organize, litigate and pressure both companies and the government. “Despite what Mr. Trump might think, the climate crisis is real and not a hoax…
The Trump transition teams… David Bernhardt, former Interior Department solicitor general under President Bush, on the Interior Department. …Scott Segal, co-head of government relations at the legal and lobbying firm Bracewell…
Bernhardt, a partner at the law firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck… …regulatory issues such as the Endangered Species Act…
… His key advisers have included Oklahoma-based shale oil producer Harold Hamm and North Dakota Rep. Kevin Cramer (R). …

A letter to Mr. Trump: the economic case for energy, equity and climate leadership (11/15/2016) | @dan_kammen @ucberkeley
– Summary: The economic case for clean energy is as compelling as is the climate science. Pursuing both brings together economic advancement and political leadership.
… A president who claims to be a populist would be a hypocrite do anything but actively promote and campaign for a sustainable climate and the clean energy business that goes with it, and to do so in ways that promotes energy access, equality, and environmental justice. These are all pro-business, pro-worker positions. …

Obama’s Environmental Legacy: How Much Can Trump Undo? (11/14/2016) | @YaleE360
@bruneski @sierraclub…
@Revkin Environmental Understanding @PaceUniversity…
Christine Harbin @AFPhq…
@MichaelGerrard @ColumbiaClimate…
@mayboeve @350…
@BobPerch @C2ES_org… …We urge president-elect Trump’s transition team to take the time to hear from a broad range of perspectives on environmental and energy issues. …
@RobertStavins @HKS_BizGov…

How Donald Trump’s Energy Policies Are All About Removing Regulations (w Video; 9/26/2016) | @katiefehren @fortune
… The energy regulations that Trump says he’ll undo include opening up federal lands and offshore areas for oil and gas exploration and production, rescinding a moratorium on new coal mining leases on federal land, and removing rules to protect streams from coal mining and waterways and wetlands from industry in general. Furthermore, Trump says he would eliminate the Clean Power Plan…
… Ebell has called the Clean Power Plan “illegal” and has said joining the Paris agreement is “unconstitutional.” …