It’s happened. Donald Trump has been officially elected as the president of the United States of America. Depending on your point of view this either spells an impending apocalypse or a glorious return to the (possibly misremembered!) good old day’s. Regardless of anyone’s opinion on Trump, his passionate supporters, or his controversial comments, one thing can be stated conclusively;
Trumps win combined with a majority republican government means we are in for a very different 4 years than we had with the Obama administration. A number of people have stated that on this side of the Atlantic we shouldn’t worry too much about American politics. However the old adage is still true to an extent today; when America sneezes the whole world catches a cold.
So what implications will this election have for the global energy sector?
First off we know that Trump doesn’t believe in climate change so renewable energy and all of the clean energy policies passed by Obama may well end up on the back burner, for the next 4 years at least. Instead Trump has promoted more conventional energy sources gas, coal, oil etc. This has already been reflected in the American stock market;
Renewable energy companies such as wind; solar and utility organisations providing for these industries went down between 5 and 17% on the U.S stock exchange. While on the other hand the world’s top coal trader Glencore plc went up 5%. Other U.S traditional energy suppliers such as oil and gas suppliers have seen varying levels of increase.
In addition to this Trump has repeatedly stated that he wants to put Americans to work, and states in the policies section of his website
“Make America energy independent, create millions of new jobs, and protect clean air and clean water. We will conserve our natural habitats, reserves and resources. We will unleash an energy revolution that will bring vast new wealth to our country.”
Trump has vowed to put these American’s to work in the industries of oil, gas and coal using the U.S’s own resources which could have a number of negative connotations for the rest of the world. The president elect doesn’t just want to increase America’s homegrown energy supplies, he wants to make it completely domestic. OPEC and all oil producing countries are also fearful of what an energy independent US might mean for the global energy markets. This could not only affect market prices, supply and demand, it could send the already sensitive oil market into a frenzy. Trump’s lack of belief in climate change will undoubtedly have an affect on the increasing renewable energy sector across the world. Climate change is widely regarded as one of the biggest problems facing this generation. So to be now faced with an uphill battle against the united states government, the renewable energy sector faces major setbacks.
Mr. Trump said a lot of things throughout his campaign, some of them seeming a bit outlandish and ridiculous, however whether or not he means to, or indeed will be able to, follow through remains to be seen. However based on what has been seen so far of the new U.S government it is can be concluded that renewable, clean energy suppliers will be much less optimistic about the sector than their conventional energy counterparts. For the time being at least.