This Is What US President Rick Perry Would Have Looked Like

01 July, 2017, 00:59 | Author: Clint Gray
  • President Donald Trump listens in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington Monday

"President Trump is committed to utilizing our abundant domestic energy resources both to create jobs here at home and to strengthen America's global influence and leadership overseas", the White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said at a press briefing on Monday.

After several reporters grilled him on climate change, Perry spoke about the importance of expanding nuclear energy to reduce emissions.

"And later this week we'll have an important announcement on the President's agenda in terms of how it will help establish American energy dominance, " Spicer noted. "The idea that we can't have an intellectual conversation about just what are the actual impacts of climate change.Let's just talk about it, what's wrong with that?" Despite all the jokes - like poking fun at reporters for asking complicated questions he couldn't understand and saying he wants to "make nuclear energy cool again" - Perry gave the press corps a message fraught with contradictions regarding climate change. The people who say the science is settled, it's done - if you don't believe that you're a skeptic, a Luddite.

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'I don't buy that, ' he said. "I tend to say, okay, let's have a conversation and get these guys together". "Let's come out of the shadows of hiding behind your political conversations and let's talk about it!" And I'm full well - you know, I can be convinced. "There are going to be a lot of silver arrows and we are going to have to figure out what are the 10 or 20 small things that can be done across different areas to build it up". Among his first moves was to take steps to dismantle the Clean Power Plan, which imposed tight emissions restrictions that would force the shutdown of many coal plants. "The science isn't settled yet", Perry said.

"No, what I said was: Climate is changing, always has".

Perry appeared saddened by the failed promise of nuclear energy, noting that it had been "strangled" by government regulations. "In climate science unresolved questions remain ― issues that now lack conclusive evidence". State officials put emergency measures in gear that have abated the problem somewhat, but the result is that the oil and gas industry has to find new - and potentially more expensive - ways to dispose of its wastewater. He also said new discoveries in carbon capture for coal-fired power plants might surprise the world soon.

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At the culmination of the White House "Energy Week", Trump is set to announce a comprehensive review of USA nuclear regulation, stopping short - for now - of the big federal interventions advocates say are needed to revitalize the industry, which is struggling to compete against cheap natural gas and dispose of its radioactive waste.

"Either they do think Carbon dioxide emissions are a problem, which is why nukes and [carbon capture and sequestration] would make sense, at least to them, or they don't", said David Bookbinder, chief counsel for the libertarian Niskanen Center.

"Now, can we agree we ought to have a conversation as a people?"

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During his EIA conference speech on Tuesday, Perry was interrupted a second time by a protester, who also called him a "climate denier".

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