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Donald J. Trump on Thursday traveled to Pittsburgh, a city once synonymous with the rich coal seam that runs beneath it and now the capital of natural gas fracking, to promise the impossible: a boom for both coal and gas.

Mr. Trump’s energy promises to those attending a corporate conference contained a fundamentally incompatible concept, as expanding the exploration of natural gas is the surest way to hurt coal production, and vice versa. Since the two fuels compete directly for the same market — the power plants that light American homes — it is effectively impossible to increase production of one without decreasing the other.

But ever the salesman, Mr. Trump gave it a go and promised to restore the region’s old coal economy and pump up its booming new gas economy.

“The shale energy revolution will unleash massive wealth for America,” he told an audience of chief executives from the energy industry. “And we will end the war on coal and the war on miners.”

It is not the first time Mr. Trump has tailored his policies to be all things to all audiences. Last week, he told auditors tallying the cost of his tax plan that he had dropped a $1 trillion tax cut for small businesses while he told the small business lobby he had not. He has promised a foreign policy more focused on American interests than on global entanglements as he promises to widen the war on the Islamic State and take oil from Iraq. His immigration policies have swung wildly depending on his audience.

Energy experts said Mr. Trump’s pledges on gas and coal pandered to his audience while showing a lack of basic knowledge about energy markets.

“There is a fundamental inconsistency between Trump’s promise to ‘bring the coal industry back 100 percent,’ as he says, and any promises to use government policy to grow the market for natural gas,” said Robert N. Stavins, director of the environmental economics program at Harvard.

“The primary cause of the tremendous fall in coal employment is low natural gas prices, due to increased supplies of natural gas from hydraulic fracturing,” Professor Stavins said. “If the Trump administration wanted to help coal, it could ban fracking. But he can’t have it both ways.”

The United States is already on track to become the world’s largest oil and gas producer, largely without specific policies to push new production. Over the last decade, breakthroughs in hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, led to a boom in production of natural gas, which is now about 20 percent cheaper than coal. That boom, in turn, drove down demand for coal. Last year, natural gas overtook coal as the largest source of the nation’s electricity.

“If you produce more gas in a static demand environment, you’re going to have a fuel fight between gas and coal,” said Kevin Book, an analyst with ClearView Energy Partners, a nonpartisan energy analysis firm.

It is also hard to see how Mr. Trump could use policy levers to expand production of natural gas. Over the last year, the historically high production levels of natural gas production glutted the market. Companies have idled fracking rigs as they wait for supply to tighten and prices to rise. Experts said that in a free market, the government cannot change that.

“No president controls the market. It’s pretty straightforward,” Mr. Book said.

Mr. Trump vowed to do so by ending regulations on fracking. “I think probably no other business has been affected by regulation than your business,” he told the gas executives. “Federal regulations remain a major restriction to shale production.”

That is largely false. The Obama administration has put forth regulations intended to govern the safety of fracking on public lands — a rule which would cover about 100,000 fracking wells, or about 10 percent of all fracking taking place in the United States. The vast majority of fracking occurs on state or private land and is governed by state and local regulations.

Still, in his appeal to both sides of the fossil fuel equation, Mr. Trump is distinguishing himself from Hillary Clinton, his Democratic opponent, who has put forward proposals to continue and increase environmental regulations on both coal and fracking.

In a debate in March, Mrs. Clinton said, “By the time we get through all of my conditions, I do not think there will be many places in America where fracking will continue to take place.”

She has also vowed to uphold President Obama’s climate change policy, the Clean Power Plan. The heart of the rule is a set of aggressive Environmental Protection Agency regulations intended to curb planet-warming carbon pollution, which comes mainly from coal-fired power plants. The rule has been temporarily suspended by a Supreme Court order, but if it is eventually upheld, it would most likely lead to the shutdown of hundreds of coal-fired plants — and an eventual freeze of the nation’s coal markets.

At a town hall event in Ohio in March, Mrs. Clinton said, inartfully but accurately, “We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.”

To compensate for that, Mrs. Clinton has proposed a plan to spend $30 billion over 10 years to bring new jobs and industries, such as call centers and software development, to coal country.

But her proposals are disliked in many parts of coal country, where Mr. Trump has put forth a more immediate and crowd-pleasing proposal: “We will scrap the Clean Power Plan,” he pledged in Pittsburgh, as he has done before.

That may please the coal industry, but it could work against natural gas, the fuel of choice for a market moving away from coal. Gas produces just half the carbon pollution of coal.

“Ironically, if Trump really wants to do something as president for natural gas, he should support the Clean Power Plan,” Professor Stavins said. “Yes, it will hurt coal, but it increase demand for natural gas.”

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