June 28 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump on Wednesday renewed his quest for "energy dominance" by increasing drilling and mining with fewer regulations.
Trump met with state and tribal leaders as well as energy industry association officials at the White House as part of "energy week."
"I'm confident that, working together, we can usher in a golden age of American energy dominance and the extraordinary financial and security benefits that it brings to our citizens, not only the Native Americans, but all over the country," Trump told reporters in prepared remarks before the meeting.
He said cooperation is important.
"Today's conversation is a chance for these state, local and tribal leaders to discuss how we can cooperate and support them even more in unleashing these domestic energy reserves," he said. "They're tremendous reserves that we never appreciated, we never understood, but now we understand them very well.
Trump reiterated the need to end restrictions on energy production activities and roll back environmental regulations that prevent it.
"Many of your lands have rich natural resources that stand to benefit your people immensely," Trump said as American Indian leaders appeared with him.
"These untapped resources of wealth can help you build new schools, fix roads, improve your communities and create jobs, jobs like you've never seen before. All you want is the freedom to use them, and that's been the problem. It's been very difficult, hasn't it? It'll be a lot easier now, under the Trump administration."
He referred to mostly Republican group of governors and other state government representatives present at the meeting when he said: "Many of our states have also been denied access to the abundant energy resources on their lands that could bring greater wealth to the people and benefit to our whole nation.
"We're becoming more and more energy dominant. I don't want to be energy free; we want to be energy dominant in terms of the world."
He noted how Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and other administration officials have "taken swift action to lift the crushing restrictions on American energy."
"Scott Pruitt has done an amazing job, an incredible job, in a very short period of time," he said.
Also on hand was Energy Secretary Rick Perry.
The former Texas governor appeared Tuesday at a White House briefing. He spoke for about 30 minutes.
"One of the things we want to do at DOE is to make nuclear energy cool again, from the standpoint of -- if you remember when we were kids -- well, sorry, you're nowhere near my age -- but when I was younger in the '60s and a lot of kids wanted to go into the nuclear energy field," he said Tuesday. "At my alma mater there were a lot of young boys and girls who wanted to be nuclear engineers."
Perry said he has not discussed Trump's climate beliefs with him.
A reporter asked Trump at the end of his speech whether he believes in climate change.
Trump did not answer.