WASHINGTON (AP/WKYT/WYMT) - President Donald Trump signed an executive order that will roll back many of former President Barack Obama's efforts to curb global warming.
The order is aimed at helping spur American energy jobs and calls for an overhaul of former President Obama's Clean Power Plan, which cracked down on carbon emissions from coal-fired plants.
The president signed the order at the headquarters of the Environmental Protection Agency.
Trump said this is "the start of a new era" in energy production. The president also lifted a ban on new coal leases on federal lands, winning praise from Governor Matt Bevin and the leader of the Kentucky Coal Association.
"It was more than symbolic. It will be absolutely transformative. There's no question. Not only for the coal industry but for industry in general," said Governor Matt Bevin.
"By rolling back these policies, we give coal the opportunity to compete in a free market. And we know that our coal can compete in that market, so there's a lot of optimism," said Tyler White, president of the Kentucky Coal Association.
Environmental groups and others are concerned the president's move will do more harm than good. Chris Porter with Kentuckians for the Commonwealth believes the order will hurt the environment and fall short of helping the state's economy.
"This does nothing for miners," said Chris Porter. "This does nothing for workers, this does nothing for families that have really built the American economy through their effort to mine coal, to power the industrial revolution."
Trump has called global warming a "hoax," and has repeatedly criticized Obama's efforts as an attack on American workers and the struggling U.S. coal industry.