By Juliet Eilperin and Josh Dawsey
Energy Secretary Rick Perry is planning to step down from his post by the end of the year, according to four individuals briefed on his plans, making him one of about a dozen Cabinet members to leave their post during President Trump’s administration.
Perry probably will return to the private sector, one of these individuals said. All four spoke on the condition of anonymity because no formal announcement has been made.
The former Texas governor, who has touted fossil fuels but also research into alternative energy since taking office, has not enacted the same sweeping policy changes as his counterparts at the Interior Department and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Michael Greenstone, who directs the University of Chicago’s Energy Policy Institute, said in an email that Perry would leave government with a mixed record.
“By all accounts, Secretary Perry stands out for running the DOE forthrightly and without seeking personal gain. But at the same time, his DOE has pursued policies, for example his efforts to increase coal usage on the grid, that seem to willfully ignore science and economics,” Greenstone said. “Ultimately, how one judges his tenure depends on how you add these factors up and whether you think they reflect his private views or the president’s positions.”