Rick Perry, secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), has informed President Donald Trump that he will resign from his position, effective later this year.
A press release from the DOE says the secretary “is immensely grateful to President Trump and the American people for this opportunity to serve and looks forward to continuing to support the president’s agenda after he returns home to Texas later this year.”
According to Reuters, Perry’s resignation comes after finding himself “engulfed in Congress’ impeachment investigation” of Trump; however, Perry has responded that his decision has “nothing to do” with the investigation.
During his tenure as secretary, Perry most notably headed the DOE’s controversial study exploring the reliability of the U.S. electric grid in 2017. Perry had urged the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to issue a final rule requiring its organized markets to “develop and implement reforms that would fully price generation resources necessary to maintain the reliability and resiliency of our nation’s grid,” the DOE said. Clean energy groups feared that a new FERC ruling would change the way energy prices were regulated and, instead, favor coal and nuclear. In the end, FERC terminated its consideration of the DOE grid proposal.
Perry has released the following video message to DOE employees:
The full resignation letter from Perry to Trump can be read here.