Happy Friday everyone! Today's newsletter marks the end of the sixth week of Generate. So I'd like to take this admittedly arbitrary moment to thank you all for reading, and your great feedback. And to offer a reminder that Axios has a bunch of cool and informative (and free!) newsletters that you can sign up for here. Ok let's dive in . . .
Separate appearances Thursday by two of Trump's top-level officials offer a look at the Trump administration's approach to energy and climate change.
Tough line in Pennsylvania: EPA chief Scott Pruitt took his deregulatory message to both a Pennsylvania coal mine and Fox News on Thursday, touting White House steps to unwind rules that are a central pillar of the Obama-era effort to tackle climate change.
Rosy talk in Texas: While Pruitt was in Pennsylvania, Energy secretary Rick Perry was in Texas applauding a project (partially DOE-funded) to capture carbon emissions from a coal-fired power plant.
What's next: A key question is how much federal resources the federal government will put into carbon-trapping tech at a time when the White House is aiming to slash agency budgets overall.
Trump's approach to low-carbon tech innovation remains to be seen. But his assault on Obama's climate and energy policies overall — on power plants, cars and more — will probably slow the pace of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions cuts, or even
My colleague Amy Harder chatted recently with the head of a huge coal producer. Take it away....
The CEO of Cloud Peak Energy, the U.S.'s third largest coal company, says he's hoping to do a record amount of coal exports this year. "There is already a revival in exports compared to this time last year, but that wasn't due to Trump," CEO Colin Marshall told Axios earlier this week in an interview.
Why now: Coal exports are poised to go up due to greater international demand from countries like China and South Korea, Marshall says.
Reality check: Despite Marshall's prediction that coal exports will rise this year, a sustained expansion of such exports is unlikely because most proposals for new coastal terminals to export the product, especially in the Northwest, have failed to come online due to local opposition and financial woes of companies involved.
Via my Axios colleague Shannon Vavra....
Mark your calendar: Tesla CEO Elon Musk said on Twitter yesterday that the company will unveil an electric semi truck in September as part of his "Master Plan Part 2," although it's unclear when the truck will be available. This is the first time the company is moving into that segment of the industry. Musk called his team's work "seriously next level."
Context: Semi trucks haul an enormous amount of consumer goods across the U.S., and on average get between 4 and 8 miles per gallon from diesel fuel. The max weight for a U.S. semi truck is 80,000 pounds over 18 wheels, according to Popular Mechanics. Some of this weight will likely have to be allotted for the weight of batteries in Tesla's rollout. The top-selling semi is Freightliner, which is made by Daimler Trucks North America.
Tesla also will roll out a pickup truck in 18 to 24 months and a new roadster convertible is in the works. Musk tweeted the rollout of the new Model 3 compact sedan will be in July.
One level deeper: As Quartz smartly points out, "Existing lithium-ion batteries capable of powering a semi-truck for 500 miles (804 kilometers) would weigh 23-tons, half the weight of the truck itself," and would require potentially new battery chemistry to work.
Harder line on Paris: In an interview with Fox News, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt said the Paris climate change accord is "something we need to exit."
Stick a fork in it: Add former Obama Treasury secretary and chief of staff Jack Lew to the list of people who say carbon taxes, which are getting some buzz lately, simply can't achieve political launch velocity.
Up, up, and away: The Energy Information Administration this week predicted that U.S. crude oil production, forecast for record levels in 2018, will inch just above 10 million barrels per day late in the year. But the CEO of one prominent company thinks it'll be even higher.
Oil sands: Chevron may sell its 20 percent stake in Canada's Athabasca Oil Sands project, which could bring in $2.5 billion, according to Reuters.
Apple: Three more of the tech giant's suppliers — Compal Electronics Inc., Sunwoda Electronic Co. and Biel Crystal Manufactory Ltd. — have committed to using only renewable energy, which means seven suppliers have made that pledge, Bloomberg reports. Apple says it already gets 96 percent of its direct energy supplies from renewables.
ConocoPhillips: The company is selling $3 billion worth of holdings in the San Juan basin natural gas region of Colorado and New Mexico to a partnership between Hilcorp Energy and the Carlyle Group, a private equity firm.
Congress: A town hall meeting dominated by ... climate change and not health care? Apparently so! According to Michigan's MLive media group, one of GOP Rep. Justin Amash's town hall meeting this week in Byron Township was very heavy on the topic.
On campus: Reuters decided to survey college 21 Republican clubs about climate change and found that roughly half agree with the scientific mainstream.
Have a great weekend! But before it starts (and while it's happening for that matter), please check out the Axios stream for all kinds of good coverage. See you back here on Monday.