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Obama’s climate conundrum: Oil and gas versus low emissions

Barack Obama wants to cut carbon emissions. The US president also wants to increase domestic oil and gas production. Can he do both?

Even as US oil and gas production reaches new highs, Washington is putting its foot down on climate change.  In a speech to Georgetown University on 26 June, US president Barack Obama fleshed out an ambitious blueprint to reduce coal-fired power generation and position the US as a leader in “a global assault” against greenhouse gases (GHGs). Through a series of executive orders, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will be charged with developing new rules for carbon emissions - these will apply mainly to coal-fired power plants responsible for 40% of US GHGs. The administration has set a goal of obtaining a minimum of 20% of the government’s electricity from renewable sources by 202

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