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Trump’s energy policy to focus on boosting fracking, reviving coal sector

President Trump has promised to remove any Obama-era roadblocks to energy projects such as the Keystone XL pipeline. He also has vowed to lift restrictions on mining coal and drilling for oil and natural gas. (Image: Evan El-Amin | Shutterstock.)

Following US President Donald Trump’s inauguration last week, his administration has confirmed its intentions to reverse Barack Obama’s climate change policies, boost fracking for oil and gas, and lift current restrictions affecting the coal mining sector.

In the document entitled “An America First Energy Plan,” the US new leader outlined his government’s goals, leaving out specifics about how exactly it aims to achieve them.

The one-page document posted on the White House site says the new government won’t eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA), but “refocus” its mission.

One of the first issues the piece mentions is how the new administration intends to eliminate “harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the US rule,” which would increase American wages by more than $30 billion over the next seven years, according to the post on the new White House website.

Together with a push to strengthen the US oil and gas industries, there will be a new focus on coal.

“The Trump administration is also committed to clean coal technology, and to reviving America’s coal industry, which has been hurting for too long,” it says.

Clean coal technology is a collection of methods to remove carbon dioxide emissions from coal-burning plants and bury those emissions in the ground, or use them for enhanced oil recovery. The techniques, however, are not 100% pollution-free and their use is said to increase the cost of getting that energy.

The Trump administration has also confirmed it plans to eliminating the country’s dependence on “the OPEC cartel and any nations hostile to our interests,” but it still imports 9.4 million barrels a day, according to 2015 data from the US Energy Information Administration.

And while during the election campaign Trump said he wanted to eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the one-page plan posted on the White House site says the new government would just “refocus” the EPA’s essential mission of protecting air and water sources.

“A brighter future depends on energy policies that stimulate our economy, ensure our security and protect our health. Under the Trump Administration’s energy policies, that future can become a reality,” the document concludes.