Tuesday afternoon, President Trump gleefully told Americans, “the war on coal is over!”, as he signed some new legislation that rolled back Obama’s regulations that have been killing the coal industry.
“This is what this is all about,” Trump said today at the Environmental Protection Agency headquarters. “Bringing back our jobs, bringing back our dreams and making America wealthy again. We love our coal miners!” the president exclaimed.
Trump and his administration were also able to invite some coal workers to the signing of the new legislation. As senior staff members spoke to the public about the hardships that coal miners have gone through, and how the new legislation will help them and help the economy.
The Daily Mail reports:
‘This is what this is all about,’ Trump said today at the Environmental Protection Agency headquarters. ‘Bringing back our jobs, bringing back our dreams and making America wealthy again.’
‘We love our coal miners!’ the president exclaimed.
Trump and Vice President Mike Pence – who stood alongside EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Energy Secretary Rick Perry – spoke about the plight of the coal miners, some of whom were invited today to be part of the signing ceremony.
‘I guess they like what we’re about to sign,’ Trump said, when he received elongated applause upon entering the EPA’s Map Room. ‘I knew they were going to like this one,’ the president chuckled.
As part of the roll-back, Trump will initiate a review of the Clean Power Plan, which restricts greenhouse gas emissions at coal-fired power plants.
The regulation, which was the former president’s signature effort to curb carbon emissions, has been the subject of long-running legal challenges by Republican-led states and those who profit from burning oil, coal and gas.
Trump, who has called global warming a ‘hoax’ invented by the Chinese, has repeatedly criticized the power-plant rule and others as an attack on American workers and the struggling US coal industry.
He and members of his administration again articulated that charge today.
‘You know our nation can’t run on pixie dust and hope and the last eight years showed that,’ said Zinke, during his opening remarks.
Perry said the government reforms would ensure clean water and air, but also allow for greater energy independence and a boost in American jobs.
Trump repeated that point saying, ‘We’re going to have safety, we’re going to have clean water, we’re going to have clean air, but so many [regulations] are unnecessary and so many are job-killing.’
‘We’re getting rid of the bad ones,’ the president said.
The contents of the order were outlined to reporters in a sometimes-tense briefing with a senior White House official, whom aides insisted speak without attribution, despite President Trump’s criticism of the use of unnamed sources.
The official at one point appeared to break with mainstream climate science, denying familiarity with widely publicized concerns about the potential adverse economic impacts of climate change, such as rising sea levels and more extreme weather.
In addition to pulling back from the Clean Power Plan, the administration will also lift a 14-month-old moratorium on new coal leases on federal lands.