The Drilling and Mining Industry Wish List

Jul 8, 2019

The Center for Western Priorities Drilling and Mining Industry Wish List finds the Trump administration is granting the wishes of oil, gas, coal, and uranium companies at a breathtaking pace. The report identifies 53 specific policy actions within the jurisdiction of the Interior Department requested or supported by energy interests.
Of the 53 energy industry asks reviewed, Trump’s Interior Department has already completed 36 of them, with another 12 policy actions in process. Just five industry policy goals identified have not yet been addressed during the Trump presidency. Shortly after President Trump’s inauguration, the Interior Department asked industry and the public to identify policies “that potentially burden the development or use of domestically produced resources,” with the goal of repealing or relaxing them. Corporations and trade associations, such as the National Mining Association, American Petroleum Institute, and ConocoPhillips, responded readily, submitting long wish lists of policies to be rolled back. Those same industries developed a cozy relationship with senior Interior officials, inviting them to speak at conferences and bringing lobbyists in for meetings. Armed with those policy requests, the Interior Department has moved full speed ahead to translate drilling and mining industry requests into official policy actions.


The Center for Western Priorities analyzed policy requests of extractive companies, trade associations, and electric utilities, as identified by public comments submitted to, and litigation against, the Interior Department. The requests were then compared to policy actions taken by the agency since President Trump took office, assessing whether the policy action was complete, in progress, or identified for action. See the Appendix of the report for links to sources and background documents.