Donald Trump’s Cabinet Picks and Their Environmental Positions


President-elect Donald Trump has tapped several people for his administration’s cabinet with backgrounds that may reshape the landscape for environmental and energy policies if they eventually land these positions.

To start, Rick Perry is Trump’s choice for energy secretary. The former governor of oil-rich Texas is a huge supporter of fossil fuels. But as governor, he also pushed for investment in wind energy.

Rick Perry

In fact, under his leadership Texas grew to become No. 1 in wind production, churning out twice as much wind power as Iowa, the next largest state, according to Rebecca Kern in her story Rick Perry Leaves ‘Mixed Legacy’ of Oil, Gas, Wind in Texas.

Another is Rex Tillerson, Trump’s pick to lead the State Department. The choice of the Mobil Exxon Corp. CEO is causing some concern among lawmakers who question his relationship with Russian leaders.

Rex Tillerson

But other supporters, lawmakers and business associations are applauding the selection, according to Brian Dabbs in his story Tillerson Pick Stokes Concerns Over Energy-Heavy Diplomacy.

The third is Rep. Ryan Zinke, a Republican from Montana, who's Trump’s choice to head the Interior Department.

Ryan Zinke

This pick may signal that the Trump administration is serious about ending the Obama administration's moratorium on new leases for coal mined from federal lands because Zinke pushed to end the moratorium with legislation, reports Stephen Lee in Trump's Interior Pick Opposes Coal Leasing Rethink.    

And finally there's Scott Pruitt, who Trump wants for EPA administrator.

Scott Pruitt 22

The Oklahoma attorney general is a climate skeptic and is involved in several lawsuits against the very agency he may lead with challenges of the Clean Water Rule, Clean Power Plan and methane limits for oil and natural gas industries. We have a few stories about this in Scott Pruitt Nomination for EPA Leader Triggers Concerns About Climate Change Future.