Under the vision offered by the climate justice movement and progressives like Sen. Bernie Sanders, the U.S. becomes a leader in renewable and clean energy production. Is the sun setting on fossil fuels?Göran Andersson / Getty Images
Almost no one was surprised that the annual budget released by the White House on Monday once again proposed slashing billions of dollars in federal spending on environmental protection and renewable energy research. The budget is considered an agenda-setting document for the Trump administration, and President Trump is apparently the fossil fuel industry’s best friend.
“And the oil and gas industry, I want to promise you, has no greater friend than President Donald Trump,” Vice President Mike Pence said in a Friday address to the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, an industry and lobbying group that has grown powerful with the shale fracking boom.
With an audience of fossil fuel industry insiders gathered in Columbus, Ohio, Pence listed off clean air and water protections the Trump administration has rolled back as the U.S. becomes the largest producer of oil and gas on the planet. Pence claimed that New York’s decision to ban fracking hurt the state’s economy, repeating a recent industry claim that was quickly debunked by analysts. He only alluded to climate change once, while boasting about Trump’s decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement.