It requires establishing a fundamental connection between the agendas of a broad spectrum of interest groups and climate resilience. A link that once made will turn into votes in the midterms and the presidential election. Think of it this way; the clean energy and climate communities are offering evidence in a case yet to be called in the larger court of public opinion.
Despite polls showing most people are concerned, when asked, about global warming, environmental pollutants and support clean energy alternatives, voters seem to pay little attention to these issues when deciding which candidates to support at the ballot box. Climate played some part in the presidential primaries—probably because of Bernie Sanders. Once it came down to Trump versus Clinton, these issues became just so much background noise—made conspicuous mostly by their absence. Even should cities, states, and private industry meet the reduction targets of the Obama administration, there is the question of their capacity to do so over the long-haul.
The current level of commitments is insufficient to keep the rise of global temperatures below the required 1. Pledged amounts will need to escalate at least through the middle of the century. It is not only about having pulled the U. Moreover, the rollback of regulations governing discharges of harmful chemicals into water and agriculture lands will stress food production and potable water supplies.
Environmental policy of the Donald Trump administration - Wikipedia
The relatively even division of the electorate between the parties reflected in recent elections and polls is keeping federal climate and clean energy policies in stasis. A change of Congressional majorities or administrations provides only temporary relief—lasting only until the next election. To break through the hyperpartisan gridlock at the federal level requires busting through the divisions within the electorate. Traditional information campaigns have not produced the hoped-for results. Any rising concern reflected in opinion polls over the past several years is mostly confined to Democratic voters.
Political orientations — whether Democrat or Republican — appeared to shape how people integrated science knowledge with their attitudes and beliefs about climate and energy issues. There is a definite difference between Republican and Democratic attitudes towards the seriousness of global warming. The distinction is not new. Table 1 below illustrates the difference going back to Although stopping at , nothing much has changed as seen in Table 2.
Partisan voters continue to be conflicted over the importance they place on climate and the environment, as of January It is probable that the reason for the divergence is environment is thought of in terms of protection from present and known familiar harms like lead in water supplies and smog.
Absent the connection between the two; it is not surprising polls also show voters do not consider climate change an immediate threat. Even at number seven 7 environmental issues are not high enough on voter priority lists to garner needed action, nor, it seems, even to be discussed by all but a handful of the members of Congress on either side of the aisle. Daily headlines in the popular media primarily focus on terrorism, immigration, healthcare, social security and the economy. Healthcare, poverty, education, national security, economic justice and opportunity, disaster assistance are all important problems in search of solutions.
They are, however, no more imminent in their impact nor essential to the future of the nation than the need to combat climate change. For there to be any chance of a substantial and stable federal commitment to combating climate change, voters must claim it as a priority. More importantly, constituents must convey to their elected Senators and Representatives and candidates in the midterm elections the importance they place on global climate change when casting their ballots.
Elevating climate and clean energy to a stable national priority is not about party politics at the macro-level. Rather, it is about the blocs within the parties.
Both the Republican and Democratic parties are themselves divided. The change must come from within and from the bottom-up. In a analysis, David Cutler and Francesca Dominici of Harvard University stated that under the most conservative estimate, the Trump administration's rollbacks and proposed reversals of environmental rules would likely "cost the lives of over 80 US residents per decade and lead to respiratory problems for many more than 1 million people.
The science is clear, under President Trump greenhouse gas emissions are down, Superfund sites are being cleaned up at a higher rate than under President Obama". The America First Energy Plan does not mention renewable energy and instead reflects the President's focus on fossil fuels. The statement was not taken seriously. An executive order reviving the plans for the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines was signed by Trump on January 24, with the hopes of creating jobs and bolstering domestic energy production. After months of protest , in December the Army Corp of Engineers USACE under the Obama administration announced that it would not grant an easement for the pipeline to be drilled under Lake Oahe and that USACE was undertaking an environmental impact statement to look at possible alternative routes.
Many Sioux tribes have said that the pipeline threatens the tribe's environmental and economic well-being, and that it has damaged and destroyed sites of great historic, religious, and cultural significance. The tribe has expressed concern about leaks because the pipeline passes under Lake Oahe, which serves as a major source of water. Amid protests, on March 28, , Trump signed a "sweeping executive order" instructing EPA "regulators to rewrite key rules curbing U.
Basically, you know what this is? You know what it says, right? The Obama administration fuel economy plan called for a doubling in fuel economy for new cars and light trucks, to more than 50 miles per gallon by , equivalent to a real-world average of 36 m. The state of California has a waiver that allows it to set its own auto emissions standards, which it has used to combat smog and, more recently, global warming. Thirteen other states and the District of Columbia have adopted the California standards as their own.
Arguing that the Pruitt plan violates the federal Clean Air Act and doesn't follow the agency's own regulations, in April California sued the Trump administration. All have Democratic attorneys general. While campaigning for office Trump had proposed the idea of eliminating the EPA in order to help balance the United States' budget.
Trump said, "We're going to have little tidbits left but we're going to get most of it out". These programs would be eliminated under the new set of budget cuts. The industry leaders responded, and an overwhelming number of them recommended lifting restrictions related to the environment and workers' rights. The administration says it plans to refocus the EPA mission on clean water, air, and other core responsibilities. The Department of the Interior is responsible for the management and conservation of natural resources , most federal lands such as national parks and forests, wildlife refuges and tribal territories.
Zinke is an advocate for mining and logging on federal lands. The Trump Administration plans to open up more federal land for energy development, such as fracking and drilling. The rule clarifies the federal government's jurisdiction to protect small streams and wetlands from pollution. Developers, business, and agriculture groups oppose the rule because they believe that their private property rights are violated and that undue regulatory burdens are created.
In April , President Trump directed the Department of the Interior to review 27 monuments of at least , acres in size through Executive Order In June , Zinke issued an interim report as requested in the Executive Order. He proposed a scaling back of the Bears Ears National Monument. Zinke's recommendations have been met with both approval and criticisms by state lawmakers, environmentalists, and tribal governments. In particular, Native Americans in the Southwest were fundamental in getting the Bears Ears designated as a national monument.
Members of the Navajo tribe were integral to the monument's passage. And we had to fight to get it — to play the game the Western way, the government way, to have it reestablished as a national monument, as a sacred place for us. Now there is a stupid guy trying to take it away. In January , the Interior Department announced plans to allow drilling in nearly all U. This would be the largest expansion of offshore oil and gas leasing ever proposed, and includes regions that were long off-limits to development and more than million acres in the Arctic and the Eastern Seaboard, regions that President Obama had placed under a drilling moratorium.
Scientists, environmentalists and former Interior Department officials have warned that fossil fuel extraction in the ANWR could harm the landscape and the species that live there. Speaking in February , Trump said he had little interest in opening the refuge to drilling until a friend told him Republicans have been trying to open it to drilling for decades. In December , a Trump advisory group put forth a plan to privatize Native American reservations to open them up to drilling and mining.
Many Native Americans view such efforts as a violation of tribal self-determination and culture. At least three of four chair-level members have links to the oil industry. Their proposed budget does not grant any funding for state efforts for the recovery of endangered species. The Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund, a program authorized by the Endangered Species Act , supports conservation planning, habitat restoration, land acquisition, research, and education. To qualify for funding, a state or territory must put up at least 25 percent of a project's cost. A senior scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity said gutting the fund would push endangered species toward extinction.
It happened because we applied the resources to get species over that last mile. In July , more than two dozen pieces of "legislation, policy initiatives and amendments designed to weaken" the Endangered Species Act were introduced or voted on by congress. Former oil lobbyist David Bernhardt , the deputy interior secretary, has led the push to review the endangered species act. Now is the time to modernize this antiquated law to simultaneously benefit both endangered species and the American people.
Trump's proposed border wall will block the movement of threatened wildlife and interfere with the movement of animals in response to climate change.
The wall could prevent genetic exchange. The Endangered Species Act of and candidates for that list from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service includes ninety-three species whose ranges are near or cross the border. In July , citing "bypassed environmental laws, habitat destruction, and losses to conservation and scientific research", in a report published in the scientific journal BioScience thousands of scientists "expressed alarm" over the expansion of the U.
The report has 16 co-authors and as of July 24, 2,, signatures from almost 50 countries. It has been charged that the Trump administration has attempted to change the way the federal government evaluates hazardous chemicals that may pose a risk to human health, making them more aligned with the chemical industry's wishes. Trump appointed Nancy B.
Beck as a top deputy of the EPA's toxic chemical unit, while during her previous five years she had been an executive at the industry trade association American Chemistry Council for American chemical companies. Shortly after her appointment in May , Beck rewrote, among others, the regulations covering the chemical, perfluorooctanoic acid , or PFOA, which has been linked to many serious health problems.
Her revisions make it harder to track the health consequences of the chemical, and therefore harder to regulate. Research has concluded that even minuscule amounts of chlorpyrifos can disrupt the development of fetuses and infants. In August, it was revealed that in fact Pruitt and other EPA officials had met with industry representatives on dozens of occasions in the weeks immediately prior to the March decision, promising them that it was "a new day" and assuring them that their wish to continue using chlorpyrifos had been heard.
Ryan Jackson, Pruitt's chief of staff, said in a March 8 email that he had "scared" career staff into going along with the political decision to deny the ban, adding "[T]hey know where this is headed and they are documenting it well. The risk to infant and children's health and development is unambiguous. Wendy Cleland-Hamnett, the agency's previous top official overseeing pesticides and toxic chemicals, said she first felt concern when the EPA's new leadership decided to reevaluate a plan to ban methylene chloride , and trichloroethylene , two chemicals that have caused deaths and severe health problems.
The industry met with EPA political appointees. Hamnett retired in September and was replaced by a toxicologist who has spent years helping businesses fight EPA restrictions. In , a coalition of attorneys general for several states, farm workers, and environmental groups sued then-EPA chief Scott Pruitt over his chlorpyrifos ban reversal. Saying that the EPA had "violated federal law by ignoring the conclusions of agency scientists that chlorpyrifos is harmful," on August 9, , the 9th U.
According to the EPA, lead poisoning is the number one environmental health threat for children ages 6 and younger. No new standards have been set since , though it is agreed that the old standards need to be updated. In December , after Pruitt requested six more years to regulate lead levels, a divided federal appeals court issued a writ of mandamus ordering Pruitt to regulate lead within the next 90 days. The Court called the lead paint risks for children "severe".
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They have been found to contaminate several areas, reaching water supplies near military bases, chemical plants, and other sites in the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest. Members of Congress had a very strong reaction to the release of information regarding the withholding of the study, including several Republican lawmakers from states which have been affected by chemical contamination.
Republican Representative Brian Fitzpatrick American politician said in a statement:. Faced with several contamination sites in their state of Vermont, several Vermont lawmakers also voiced strong opinions. Representative Peter Welch commented:. Pruitt conceded that his agency should take "concrete action" related to chemicals like PFAS, but testified that he was unaware of any delay in the release of the study. An Associated Press journalist was told she was not on the invitation list and forcibly removed from the room.
Environmental policy of the Donald Trump administration
He sent a letter to Pruitt saying "Clean drinking water is a public health issue that does not belong behind closed doors. EPA Administer Scott Pruitt hired former Oklahoma banker Albert Kelly to head the Superfund program, which is responsible for cleaning up the nation's most contaminated land. Kelly completely lacked any experience with environmental issues, and had just received a lifetime ban from working in banking , his career until then.
Much of the Trump administration's efforts to decrease pollution regulation involved directly rescinding or overturning pollution regulations enacted under the Obama administration. When he signed the resolution repealing the rule, Trump predicted that striking down the rule would save thousands of U. These streams may be in danger of pollution by industrial and agricultural waste, sewage, radioactive materials and a large number of other pollutants now covered by the Clean Water Rule.
They write at their website: In August , Pruitt said he would reverse that decision after being sued by 16 state Attorneys General. On August 21, the Trump administration announced plans to cut back Obama's coal emissions standards for coal-fired power plants, calling them "overly prescriptive and burdensome.
Although in the scientific literature there is overwhelming consensus that global surface temperatures have increased in recent decades and that the trend is caused by human-induced emissions of greenhouse gases, neither Trump nor Pruitt believe that global warming is human-related. During the campaign, Trump expressed the view that global warming and cooling is a natural process.
Following Trump's election large amounts of climate information from the EPA website has been altered or removed. There was widespread concern among environmentalists and scientists and a coalition of scientific and academic groups began to make copies of the EPA webpages before they were deleted. Other pages have been altered to remove mentions of climate and climate change. In August , the Trump administration rolled back regulations that required the federal government to account for climate change and sea-level rise when building infrastructure.
Prior to withdrawal, the U. The announcement has been criticized by many national and international leaders, domestic politicians, business leaders and academics  as well as a large majority of American citizens 7 out of 10 according to a study by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.
Trump opposed the agreement on the grounds that it would compromise U. Proponents of the agreement argue, however, that backing out will result in a loss for our economy as new green jobs are offered instead to competitors overseas. The process of withdrawal is expected to take several years, and in the meantime there has been a vocal resistance on the state and local levels. Hawaii became the first state to independently commit to the goals initially lined out by the accord. The sentiment has also been expressed by other state governors, by mayors and businesses, and the alliance now has 10 states with governors of both the Democratic and Republican parties pledging to abide by the agreement.
Trump has committed to the removal of regulations on industry that he deems an unnecessary burden on energy industries. The Climate Action Plan, issued in June , includes regulations to industry with the ultimate goal of cutting domestic carbon emission, preparing the U. The Clean Power Plan was an Obama administration policy aimed at combating global warming that was first proposed in In March , Trump signed an executive order to officially withdraw and rewrite Obama's Clean Power Plan in an effort to revive the coal mining industry.
The information provided by the CMS can be used to verify the national emission cuts agreed to in the Paris climate accords. CMS has also supported other research projects including providing information that has helped countries assess their carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.
In September , the Trump administration submitted plans to roll back Obama-era legislation designed to reduce oil and gas industry leaks of methane gas. The proposed new rule would put an additional , tons of methane into the atmosphere from to , an amount that is roughly equivalent to more than 30 million tons of carbon dioxide.
Governor Jerry Brown of California called the administration's proposal "perhaps the most obvious and dangerous and irresponsible action by Mr. During its first few months in office the Trump administration rescinded rules limiting mercury and air toxins from power plants,  limiting water pollution from coal plants,  banning the pesticide chlorpyrifos ,  and banning methane emissions from landfills,  among other rules, which has resulted in lawsuits from various environmental groups such as the Environmental Defense Fund and the Natural Resources Defense Council.
They have been reckless and not followed the basic requirements of the law. If they keep showing the same disregard for the law, their attempt to repeal all these environmental regulations will go badly for them. Some of the lawsuits have already been successful, such as a lawsuit from the Environmental Defense Fund and other environmental groups against the Trump administration's decision to suspend a rule which limited methane emissions from oil and gas wells, a decision which was overturned by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Business projects in Russia Election interference timeline Links of associates with Russian officials Steele dossier Trump Tower meeting Trump Tower wiretapping allegations Classified information disclosure Special Counsel investigation Keystone Pipeline and Dakota Access Pipeline. Dakota Access Pipeline protests. Retrieved December 8, Retrieved March 16, Retrieved April 15,