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Donald Trump Address to Oil Industry

Donald Trump is venturing Thursday into what is uncharted territory for most presidential candidates: North Dakota, the heart of America’s oil boom.

And the oil industry is eager to hear what the Republican Party’s presumptive presidential nominee is going to say at an oil conference he’s addressing Thursday afternoon in Bismarck.

The businessman has not made expansive remarks about energy policy during the presidential campaign so far, leaving many wondering where he comes down on a host of issues. Industry leaders and environmentalists have been forced to glean information from Mr. Trump’s sporadic comments, such as how he’d want to take some of the profits from the Keystone XL pipeline and how he’d back corn ethanol despite the oil industry’s opposition.

“Well, I think I do support Trump,” said Ron Ness, president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council, which is hosting the conference, when asked if he supports the candidate. “I’m looking forward to hearing his policy.”

Many oil executives previously opted to back other GOP hopefuls who had clearer and more established pro-oil positions, such as former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, both of whom dropped out of the race months ago.

“I was kind of a Marco Rubio supporter for quite a while,” Mr. Ness said.

Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer, North Dakota’s only congressman, is advising the Trump campaign and has submitted white papers encouraging policies that, as Mr. Trump might say, put America – specifically states – first.

In a recent interview, Mr. Cramer said such policies include repealing a raft of environmental regulations, including the Environmental Protection Agency’s rule cutting carbon emissions from power plants, and ensuring other countries and entities, namely the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries or OPEC, don’t put the U.S. at an oil price disadvantage.

Mr. Cramer has sponsored a bill that would create a commission to investigate whether OPEC is illegally manipulating oil prices.

“We should be prepared to make sure that everyone, to the degree that we can, is playing by the same set of rules, or at least not manipulating the rules,” said Mr. Cramer.

Some might see such policies, like other Trump foreign policy goals, as confrontational. Mr. Cramer said he isn’t prejudging OPEC but that “forming a commission sends a message to the marketplace that we’re keeping an eye out.”

North Dakota is at the heart of the U.S. oil boom. Between 2006 and 2015, the state’s oil production went from under 150,000 barrels a day to a peak of 1.2 million barrels, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Overall U.S. oil production nearly doubled over that same time period, with a peak of 9.7 million barrels of oil a day in April 2015. Production has since declined to about 9.1 million barrels, amid a drop in global oil prices since 2014.

Mr. Ness said that in 2006 the conference he’s hosting Thursday attracted 500 people. This year, he expects about 2,500 attendees, down from a peak of 4,300 in 2014. He expects roughly 7,500 to attend Mr. Trump’s speech.

“Certainly with the industry downturn, we think that’s fabulous,” Mr. Ness said in interview before the conference.

Mr. Trump hasn’t been entirely sympathetic to the oil industry battered by low prices.

Speaking at a rally in Dallas in September, the businessman said that he has “so many friends in the energy business,” but he went on to dismiss their recent hardships. Oil companies and related industries have faced a series of bankruptcies and have laid off thousands of people over the past year.

“They are great people, they are working. They are not as rich as they were about two months ago, but these are minor details,” Mr. Trump said, prompting laughter from the crowd. “They will be fine.”

54 Comments on "Donald Trump Address to Oil Industry"

  1. Apneaman on Sat, 28th May 2016 10:35 am 

    Not a big fan of Alternet, but I’m going to waste an opportunity to piss off and piss on Trump fan boys.

    Masculine Insecurities Are Driving Trump’s Train of Lies—According to Science
    It turns out that the joke about men driving expensive sports cars to compensate for other shortcomings is true.

  2. Davy on Sat, 28th May 2016 12:01 pm 

    “As El Nino Exits, La Nina Looms, Promises Her Type of Mayhem”

    “Now the ocean’s surface is starting to cool, which may signal the start of a La Nina. Scientists say this pattern typically contributes to more hurricanes in the Atlantic, drought in Brazil and heavy rain in Indonesia and India.”

    “El Nino extremes are greater, while La Nina lasts longer,” said Kevin Trenberth, distinguished senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado.”

    “Forecasters on two continents have issued La Nina watches for this year. Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology says the odds are about 50 percent. The U.S. Climate Prediction Center’s bet is 75 percent by December, but it says formation also could come earlier: sometime from July to September.”

    “The patterns aren’t simply opposite sides of the same coin. “La Nina is more like a strong case of ‘normal,”’ Trenberth said. If a region is typically dry, it could become arid in a La Nina. If it’s usually wet, there may be floods.”

    “Commercial and academic forecasters have said La Nina probably will cause a slightly above-average year for tropical storms and hurricanes.”

    “For places like Iowa, a major source of corn and soybeans, timing is key, said Harry Hillaker, the state’s climatologist. If a La Nina occurs early in summer, there’s a chance for hot and dry weather, which can hurt the plants as they are pollinating.”

  3. Kenz300 on Mon, 30th May 2016 6:39 am 

    What do RepubliCONS believe…….. depends who is paying….. follow the money……. fossil fuels….. oil, coal natural gas…, nuclear, NRA………the top 1%

    Are RepubliCONS the real EVIL DOERS………..they want to end Social Security, Medicare and access to contraception…….

    RepubliCONS are the reason the middle class is shrinking……

    The top 1% want it all….. and the RepubliCON party will give it to them…

  4. Boat on Mon, 30th May 2016 7:13 am 


    To be fair the Dem’s embrace nat gas including flaring. They embraced and still support low interest housing with little down payment and sketchy credit.
    The Dem’s are no longer the small military party and trotted out the generals complaining about small military cuts they agreed on.
    When Obama was first elected he had the house and senate. He did nothing to roll back the tax cuts of the rich from the Reagan or Bush eras. Plenty of unsolved problems for all the evil doers.

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