WASHINGTON, D.C. – The US energy industry is reacting positively to Republican Donald Trump’s presidential victory, expecting him to be a strong advocate for more oil and gas output and to cut red tape that has held back billions of dollars of investment in new projects, according to a Reuters report.
The world’s largest energy market saw a boom in oil and gas output under Democratic President Barack Obama’s administration, as improved technology led to the development of shale energy reserves that had previously been too expensive to produce.
But even during the good times, the energy industry was critical of environmental regulations that hindered further development. Now, they expect Trump to roll much of that back.
While Trump has given little detail on energy policy, he has surrounded himself with shale industry supporters and voiced support for infrastructure projects, including pipelines.
“We are looking forward to President Trump doing what he promised, which is to undo many of the onerous regulations that have plagued our industry throughout an Obama presidency,” Harold Hamm, chief executive of oil producer Continental Resources Inc., was quoted to say.
According to Reuters, Trump has considered Hamm as a possible energy secretary, in what would be the first time the role has been filled from the oil and gas industry since the position was created in 1977.
Trump’s promise to create new jobs and boost manufacturing could bode well for delayed energy projects across the United States, including the Dakota Access Pipeline, analysts said.
Exxon Mobil Corp., the world’s largest publicly traded oil producer, said it hoped Trump’s administration would use “sound science” on future regulations. Trump has called climate change a hoax. “We intend to work constructively with the president-elect and his administration,” said spokesman Alan Jeffers.
ConocoPhillips, the largest US independent oil producer, said it would work with Trump to protect the environment but also produce oil and gas needed to grow the economy. “The American people have spoken and elected Mr. Trump as president and ConocoPhillips respects that choice,” spokesman Daren Beaudo said.
Marathon Petroleum Corp., a major US refiner, said it looks forward to working with the Trump administration.