Center for Biological Diversity

For Immediate Release, April 26, 2017

Contact:  Chad Tudenggongbu, (917) 558-0849, ctudenggongbu@biologicaldiversity.org

Public Records Sought on Trump Communications Over Renewable Energy Censorship

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity filed a Freedom of Information Act request Tuesday demanding records relating to the Trump administration’s attempts to stall renewable power growth to benefit energy companies reliant on coal and other fossil fuels.

The filing requested communications between the Department of the Energy, Office of Management and Budget and fossil fuel representatives. In the request the Center demanded records of any directives and instructions to remove mentions of renewable energy from formal agency communications.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry on April 14 called for a study of the United States’ energy grid in a departmental memo, which spurred the Center’s action. The 60-day study ordered by Perry supposedly seeks to determine if policies and subsidies enacted by President Obama and previous administrations to promote renewable power are leading to the retirement of fossil fuel energy sources.

“These public records will shed light on the Trump administration’s desire to kowtow to big polluters and appease coal companies,” said Chad Tudenggongbu, a senior renewable energy campaigner at the Center. “Secretary Perry’s grid study is a thinly veiled attempt to keep dirty and dying power sources on life support by pointing the blame at renewable energy.”

Perry’s comments indicated a desire to ensure grid reliability by protecting baseload power sources, specifically coal and nuclear power. Renewable energy sources like solar enhance grid security and reliability by bringing energy supply closer to the load, diversifying energy portfolio mix and enabling energy technology innovations necessary for the long-term sustainability of electric service, but they were absent from the secretary’s comments.

“Perry claims he wants to ensure a stable power grid, but he’s actually trying to hamper the development of a growing clean energy resource for the sake of an outdated one,” said Tudenggongbu. “Distributed renewable power is one of the most promising paths to a diversified, healthy and affordable energy economy.”

Download today’s requests here and here.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.2 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

www.biologicaldiversity.org

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