Several energy companies with Oklahoma ties, including wind power companies, helped President Donald Trump amass $1.4 billion in wealth, according to a newly released record of his finances by the Office of Government Ethics.
Among the companies listed in the report were Halliburton, Phillips 66, Exxon Mobile, General Electric, Burlington Santa Fe Railroad and NextEra. The report showed the money collected was made through investments, interest or dividends. In all, Trump made between $97,009 and $245,000 from the companies.
Perhaps the most head scratching is NextEra. The Florida-based wind energy company boasts more than 100 wind farms across Oklahoma. It has also been the subject of several lawsuits in the Sooner state.
Trump has come out strongly against renewable energy, often parroting rhetoric from the likes of Continental Resources’ Harold Hamm, who served as an adviser on the president’s campaign.
“The wind kills all your birds. All your birds, killed. You know, the environmentalists never talk about that,” then-candidate Trump said on the campaign trail at a rally in August.
Trump was also critical in writing, including in a portion of his 2015’s “Crippled America.”
“To begin with, the whole push for renewable energy is being driven by the wrong motivation, the mistaken belief that global climate change is being caused by carbon emissions. If you don’t buy that – and I don’t – then what we have is really just an expensive way of making the tree-huggers feel good about themselves,” Trump wrote.
The president has also proposed deep cuts to the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. According to documents released in May, Trump is proposing allotting $636 million for the OEERE in 2018, a 69 percent cut from the $2 billion budget in 2017.
Those cuts coincide with proposed 93 percent reductions to the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy, 56 percent cut to the Energy Department’s Fossil Energy and Development program and a 28 percent cut to nuclear power.
The agencies work to make breakthroughs in energy research, “clean-coal” technology and nuclear power efficiency research, respectively.
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