Week 7

The Headlines

March 3, 2017 | The Guardian

“Donald Trump’s administration is proposing a 25% reduction in the EPA’s $8.1bn budget, eliminating nearly 3,000 jobs and several programs including the agency’s environmental justice office. Funding for the cleanup of lead, marine pollution, tribal lands and the Great Lakes region faces severe cuts, while climate initiatives are earmarked for a 70% budget reduction.”

EPA expected to reopen vehicle emissions decision: source

March 3, 2017 | Reuters

“The auto group requests follow a separate letter to President Donald Trump earlier this month from the chief executives of GM, Ford Motor Co and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCAU.N) (FCHA.MI), along with the top North American executives at Toyota, VW, Honda, Hyundai Motor Co (005380.KS), Nissan Motor Co Ltd (7201.T) and others urging Trump to revisit the decision.”

E.P.A. Head Stacks Agency With Climate Change Skeptics

March 7, 2017 | The New York Times

“Mr. Pruitt has drawn heavily from the staff of his friend and fellow Oklahoma Republican, Senator James Inhofe, long known as Congress’s most prominent skeptic of climate science. A former Inhofe chief of staff, Ryan Jackson, will be Mr. Pruitt’s chief of staff. Another former Inhofe staff member, Byron Brown, will serve as Mr. Jackson’s deputy. Andrew Wheeler, a fossil fuel lobbyist and a former Inhofe chief of staff, is a finalist to be Mr. Pruitt’s deputy, although he requires confirmation to the position by the Senate.”

Chief Environmental Justice Official at EPA Resigns, With Plea to Pruitt to Protect Vulnerable Communities

March 9, 2017 | InsideClimate News

“”When I hear we are considering making cuts to grant programs like the EJ small grants or Collaborative Problem Solving programs, which have assisted over 1,400 communities, I wonder if our new leadership has had the opportunity to converse with those who need our help the most,” Ali wrote. “I strongly encourage you and your team to continue promoting agency efforts to validate these communities’ concerns, and value their lives.””

EPA head Scott Pruitt denies that carbon dioxide causes global warming

March 9, 2017 | The Guardian

“This stance puts Pruitt at odds with his own agency, which states on its website that carbon dioxide is the “primary greenhouse gas that is contributing to recent climate change”. This finding is backed by Nasa, which calls CO2 “the most important long-lived ‘forcing’ of climate change”.”

The Clean Power Plan is gone — and there’s no ‘replace’

March 9, 2017 | E&E News

“It was unclear until now if the Trump administration would “repeal and replace” the Clean Power Plan, or just set upon a path to undo it. Some had anticipated that the Trump administration might pursue an alternative and much less stringent rule, but the executive order will only call for the withdrawal of the regulation.”

What You Need to Know About Trump’s Proposed Climate Cuts

March 10, 2017 | National Geographic News

“At 2016 levels, that 17-percent reduction [of NOAA} would run the U.S. Department of Defense for just under 15 hours—and could hamper U.S. weather forecasting and monitoring of natural disasters, not to mention studies of climate change, say weather and climate experts.”


State Response

Will SF Bay wetlands restoration be a casualty of EPA cuts?

March 3, 2017 | SF Gate

“Air pollution grants to big cities, programs to clean trash and pollutants from waters at the Mexican border and efforts to cut diesel emissions would all be discontinued. In addition, climate protection programs would be cut by 70 percent, while dozens of programs to reduce lead in drinking water, clean up marine pollution, and fix leaking underground storage tanks, would be slashed.”

Trump budget virtually kills Great Lakes initiative

March 4, 2017 | The Blade (Toledo, Ohio)

“To the dismay of many Toledo-area officials and environmental groups, the Trump Administration is trying to kill all but 3 percent of funding for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.”


In Other Congressional News…

March 8, 2017 | The Washington Post

“Planning 2.0, which was finalized late last year by the Bureau of Land Management, was intended to shorten and streamline the process associated with federal land use planning, while making it more transparent and accessible by allowing for earlier and greater public input on proposed management plans. It was touted by BLM officials as a way to make faster decisions that best reflect the concerns and priorities of the communities they affect.”


A Look Back

How to fight climate change without Washington

February 21, 2017 | The Boston Globe

“The ascension of Donald Trump to the presidency probably spells an end to all federal leadership on climate change for the next four years. States have to pick up the slack, and reviving the program — known by the jargony term “low-carbon fuel standard” — would be a good way to start.”

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