Republican platform heavy on energy, silent on climate

By Timothy Cama | 07/08/2024 04:34 PM EDT

The document addresses drilling, public lands and permitting.

Donald Trump.

Former President Donald Trump during a campaign event in Wisconsin last month. Jeffrey Phelps/AP

The Republican Party aims to make the United States “Energy Dominant,” slash regulations and streamline federal permitting if former President Donald Trump is reelected.

The GOP’s platform committee approved the “Make America Great Again!” document Monday. It follows the former president’s style and includes his signature capitalizations. It was also crafted behind closed doors, in a break from tradition.

The new 16-page plan is far less detailed than the 66-page version the party published ahead of the 2016 election. In 2020, the Republican National Committee decided not to publish a platform and instead endorsed Trump’s agenda.


The platform is also far less detailed than Project 2025, a policy playbook written by the Heritage Foundation and other conservative groups. Trump has tried to distance himself from that effort.

“President Trump’s 2024 Republican Party Platform articulates his vision to Make America Great Again in a way that is concise and digestible for every voter,” said Chris LaCivita and Susie Wiles, top Trump campaign aides.

Energy is prominent in the new GOP platform, taking up much of the first chapter on fighting inflation and reducing prices. GOP leaders are poised to approve the document at the party’s convention in Milwaukee next week.

“Under President Trump, the U.S. became the Number One Producer of Oil and Natural Gas in the World — and we will soon be again by lifting restrictions on American Energy Production and terminating the Socialist Green New Deal,” the platform says.

“Republicans will unleash Energy Production from all sources, including nuclear, to immediately slash Inflation and power American homes, cars, and factories with reliable, abundant, and affordable Energy.”

The U.S. became the world’s top oil producer in 2018 under Trump, but it became the top gas producer in 2011 under then-President Barack Obama. It has remained the top producer of both fuels since then, and output has grown consistently since President Joe Biden took office.

The Green New Deal, a set of principles for rapid decarbonization and government involvement in much of the economy, has not become law, and Biden opposes it.

In another part, the GOP pledges to “increase Energy Production across the board, streamline permitting, and end market-distorting restrictions on Oil, Natural Gas, and Coal.”

It will also “once again make America Energy Independent, and then Energy Dominant, lowering Energy prices even below the record lows achieved during President Trump’s first term.”

While the document does not provide a measurement for energy independence or energy dominance, the U.S. has exported more oil, gas and energy as a whole than it imports for years.

The platform promises to cut regulations, including by bringing back Trump’s 2017 executive order that agencies must eliminate two rules for each new one.

“Republicans will slash Regulations that stifle Jobs, Freedom, Innovation and make everything more expensive. We will implement Transparency and Common Sense in rulemaking,” the platform says.

It includes plans to overturn the Biden administrations greenhouse gas regulation for cars — dubbed Biden’s “Electric Vehicle Mandate” — and back various tariff policies for imports, including “baseline” tariffs on all imported goods and the “Reciprocal Trade Act,” a proposal to impose retaliatory tariffs on any nation that puts tariffs on U.S. goods.

And it proposes to “open limited portions of Federal Lands to allow for new home construction,” an idea promoted by figures including William Perry Pendley, who led the Bureau of Land Management during Trump’s previous term and helped write the Project 2025 plan.

The GOP platform makes no mention of climate change, greenhouse gases, the environment, pollution, clean air or clean water. It makes a brief mention of conservation in a section on restoring “American Beauty.”

“Republicans will promote beauty in Public Architecture and preserve our Natural Treasures. We will build cherished symbols of our Nation, and restore genuine Conservation efforts.”

Nor does it have any promises about offloading federal land, beyond the mention of housing. The 2016 platform explicitly endorsed legislation to transfer federal lands to states, which spurred Rep. Ryan Zinke (R-Mont.) to step down as a convention delegate in protest.