Trump's speech at the White House on Monday afternoon will focus on the administration's "practical approach to addressing environmental challenges while also supporting a strong economy", Mary Neumayr, who heads the president's Council on Environmental Quality, told reporters in previewing his remarks.
"We will defend the environment but we will also defend American sovereignty, American prosperity, and we will defend American jobs", he said in his Monday speech.
He has also vowed to pull the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement, an worldwide accord to fight global warming through carbon emissions cuts and a transformation of the world economy away from fossil fuels. "We want the cleanest air".
Trump used the speech, billed as "America's Environmental Leadership", to recast his environmental record but also bring attention to an area where he's been able to deliver on his campaign promises.
Asked why the President chose to hold the remarks and whether the Democrats' Green New Deal would be brought up during remarks, Neumayr said it was discussed when Trump spoke to his advisers about his administration's environmental actions.
Under former Environmental Protection Administrator Scott Pruitt and current agency head Andrew Wheeler, the EPA has rolled back key climate change and air pollution control programs, pulled the USA out of the Paris climate pact, cooked the books on approving toxic chemicals and blocked a ban of a pesticide so risky it can harm a child's brain at even low levels of exposure. I will not stand for it.
President Donald Trump speaks during an event about the environment in the East Room of the White House, Monday, July 8, 2019, in Washington.
They have also criticized the administration for allowing the United States to slip on other basic measures of environmental health such as air pollution and enforcement. The Trump administration's rollbacks of protections necessary to address the climate crisis threaten Midwesterners and the Great Lakes which millions depend on for safe drinking water, recreation and tourism, and economic opportunities. "The spectacle of the president straining to document a positive environmental record should be seen for what it is - utter fantasy".
And ahead of the speech, the Sierra Club said the President "has quickly established the worst record on the environment and climate action of any president in the history of the country".
"We can have arguments about it isn't happening for this reason or that", he said.
The United States also slipped in the global environmental rankings to No. 27 in 2018 from 26th during the past year of the Obama administration, according to the Environmental Performance Index, a project by Yale and Columbia universities to measure national performance on air, water, forestry and other metrics.
The United States has become the world's biggest oil and gas producer over the last couple of years, thanks mainly to a technology-led drilling boom. We have the cleanest water; it's crystal clean.
"I will not stand for it", he said.