An energy revolution sounds like an overdue component for our world, but what would an energy revolution really look like? A true energy revolution would cause so much change that the original industry would be unrecognizable. For the U.S., that could be as simple a revival of the energy industry job market, and a transformation in our dependency on foreign countries for our fuel.
As of May 2016, there were over 350,000 layoffs in the oil and gas industries alone, and that number has continued to rise over the last couple of years. According to statistics unveiled by Graves & Co. the oilfield services sector has lost 152,015 jobs since 2014. The exploration and production sector had 80,000 layoffs, and the drilling sector had 52,000 layoffs – the majority of which occurred in Texas.
The reason? In a nutshell, we’ve lost all of these jobs due to heavy dependency on foreign oil. That’s why the Trump administration has created an energy plan called the “America First Energy Plan.” This plan is designed to create energy policies that lower the cost of fuel consumption for the average American, and utilize American resources to create that fuel so we’re not dependent on other countries for our oil.
Trump’s energy plan also vows to maintain the environment and preserve natural resources as a high priority.
We’re not exactly sure what the energy revolution is going to look like just yet, as few details have been released, but here’s an overview of the main points addressed by Trump to give you an idea of what he’s got in mind.
We can be sovereign in our oil production
There are plenty of untapped energy reserves inside of America, including oil and gas, even on Federal land. Trump plans to harvest these energy sources and pour the funds back into the communities to rebuild roads, schools, and other public buildings. This alone could create thousands of new jobs in the oil industry.
From the perspective of the Trump Administration, the oil industry has been thick with prickly regulations that make it difficult for American workers to keep their jobs and make good wages, so Trump is going after these policies.
Workers are being laid off and pay has gone down
Offshore drilling is a dangerous industry, and accidents can happen to anyone. The industry has always had high injury and fatality rates. It makes sense that offshore workers should make good money considering the risk they take just by showing up to work.
Two policies Trump aims to eliminate are the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule. He says that eliminating these policies will increase not only a number of jobs available for Americans, but will greatly increase their wages as well. Trump says the Waters of the U.S. rule, created by the EPA, has cost American workers hundreds of thousands of jobs.
After signing an executive order to cut the rule, Trump told reporters, “The Clean Waters Act says that the EPA can regulate navigable waters, meaning waters that truly affect interstate commerce. But a few years ago, the EPA decided that navigable waters can mean nearly every puddle or every ditch on a farmer’s land or anyplace else that they decide. It was a massive power grab. The EPA’s regulators were putting people out of jobs by the hundreds of thousands and regulations and permits started treating our wonderful small farmers and small businesses as if they were a major industrial polluter. They treated them horribly.”
Critics say that removing these policies will make it harder for agencies like the EPA to create future regulations for the energy industry, but only time will tell.
Shifting offshore oil drilling to domestic crews
By shifting offshore drilling jobs to domestic crews inside of America, Trump plans to bring thousands of jobs back to the U.S. It’s not clear how this will take place, considering the U.S. currently relies heavily on foreign oil due to its extremely low prices, so we’ll just have to keep watching to see how he makes his plan work.