The President who shoved his radical agenda down the throats of Americans is about to watch his legacy unwind in favor of jobs and a stronger economy…
President Obama’s eight-year effort to rein in the energy and mining industries with environmental regulations will likely come to a halt under President-elect Donald Trump, who is poised to green-light key job-creating projects from the Atlantic Coast to Alaska.
With the election of Donald Trump — and a transition team that includes GOP energy lobbyist Mike McKenna and outspoken climate change skeptic Myron Ebell — both sides now see their fortunes reversing amid Trump’s promise to rescind Obama’s signature Clean Power Plan and jump-start oil, and natural gas projects.
“I think 80 percent of President Obama’s policies will be reversed very soon after Trump moves into the White House,” Robert McNally, the president of the Rapidan Group, the energy consulting firm, and former official in the George W. Bush administration, told FoxNews.com. “The Trump administration will reverse the global warming principles enacted under Obama and he will stop the politicization of infrastructure. This will definitely spur on the growth of the oil and gas industries.”
Here are three projects that could be revived soon after Trump takes office in January:
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Keystone XL Pipeline
One of the biggest environmental flashpoints of Obama’s presidency, the pipeline’s final phase – which would create a shorter route for American and Canadian crude oil coming from Alberta to Nebraska – was rejected by Obama for not serving “the national interests of the United States.”
Keystone XL faced stiff opposition from environmental groups and a minority of U.S. lawmakers amid concerns of oil spills in highly sensitive ecological terrain and worries from the Environmental Protection Agency about large increases in greenhouse gas emissions from Alberta’s carbon intensive oil sands.
Throughout his campaign Trump vowed to “immediately approve the Keystone XL pipeline” — adding he believed it would have no environmental impact and would create hundreds of jobs — and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is already pressing the president-elect to make it a priority in his first 100 days.
Copper and Crude
Besides Keystone XL and the coal, there a number of projects either on hold or in the exploratory phase that could move under the Trump administration — especially in regards to copper and gold.
Pebble Mine, in Alaska’s Bristol Bay watershed, contains one of the world’s largest deposits of copper, gold and molybdenum, but the project has been hampered since its inception over concerns from environmentalists, Native Americans and local politicians that toxic residue from the mine could harm the world’s largest population of sockeye salmon and endanger the $252 million-a-year local fishing industry.
Trump has not weighed in on the issue, but Sarah Palin — Alaska’s former governor who is rumored to be on Trump’s short list for Interior Secretary – helped ease the path for what would be one of the world’s largest open pit mines by appointing mining industry officials to lead her Department of Natural Resources and embracing resource extraction.
Offshore Drilling in the Atlantic
The Obama administration recently moved to restrict drilling in waters off the Eastern Seaboard from 2017 to 2022, but environmentalists, fishermen and those in the East Coast’s tourism industry want to make that restriction permanent before Trump comes into office.
Despite his vocal stance on U.S. energy independence and support of increased oil and gas development, Trump’s stance toward offshore drilling in the Atlantic has been vague — saying only that he backs it when “done responsibly” — but if he green-lights drilling in the Atlantic it would make him many friends in U.S. oil and gas companies and could open the possibility to expand drilling other U.S. waters.
Obama, however, could prevent this by invoking an obscure section of the 1953 Outer Continental Shelf Act that would make it difficult, maybe impossible, for future presidents to reverse the ban. He has used the act before to safeguard parts of Alaska’s Bristol Bay and parts of the Arctic.
“That’s the big question,” David Goldston, the director of government affairs at the Natural Resources Defense Council, told FoxNews.com. “Will the Obama administration go beyond the five-year ban?”
While a permananet ban is still in question, late last week Obama blocked the sale of new oil and gas drilling rights in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas north of Alaska for the next five years — a move that was praised by enviromentalists and largely scorned by oil industry represenatives.
“Once again, we see the attitude that Washington knows best — an attitude that contributed to last week’s election results,” Randall Luthi, president of the National Ocean Industries Association, told The Assocuated Press in reference to Trump’s surprise victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton. –FOX News