What Is Donald Trumps Policy On Climate Change
Trump has changed his mind a number of times on climate change.
In 2009 he was part of a business coalition pressuring President Obama to act swiftly.
If we fail to act now, it is scientifically irrefutable that there will be catastrophic and irreversible consequences for humanity and our planet.
Business coalition, featuring Donald Trump, 2009
But by 2012 he was calling climate change a “Chinese hoax.”
During the 2016 election campaign he went further and threatened to pull out of all climate negotiations and treaties.
He appeared to have a slight change of heart, agreeingthere is some connectivity between human activity and climate change, but regressed once more to claim he can’t be sure if climate change is man-made. What’s more, he thinks “it’ll change back again” without any need for interventions.
Regardless of his inconsistent opinions, it’s clear Trump has no intention of taking climate change seriously. He’s appointed a cabinet full of climate deniers and fossil fuel hangers-on, and he’s choosing to ignore the importance of the UN scientists’ recent climate change report.
And in 2017 he followed through with an election-campaign threat, announcing that he would pull the US out of the Paris Agreement. The world’s second largest emitter of climate-changing carbon dioxide gas is no longer part of a deal to limit global temperature rise, and the extreme weather and sea rises that come with it.
Epa Drops Delay Of Obama
In an about-face spurred by a 16-state lawsuit, the Trump administration EPA has dropped its decision to delay Obama-era regulations on ozone. The potent lung irritant forms when strong sunlight irradiates emissions from vehicles, power plants, and other sources.
In October 2015, the Obama administration tightened the ozone national standard from 75 parts per billion to 70 parts per billion, citing ozones toll on public health. The Obama administration estimated that the reduction would yield $2.9 to $5.9 billion worth of health benefits in 2025, outweighing its estimated annual cost of $1.4 billion.
Few were entirely thrilled with the 2015 regulations. Environmental and public-health groups criticized the regulation as not stringent enough, citing evidence that ozone still poses a public health threat at 70 parts per billion, the upper end of the ozone standards recommended by scientists advising the EPA. Meanwhile, industry groups and their allies in Congress criticized the rule for the costs it would inflict.
In June, the EPA announced its intent to delay the implementation of the rule from October 1, 2017, to October 1, 2018, citing lingering questions and the regulations complexities. In response, 16 Democratic state attorneys general and the District of Columbia petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to review the one-year delay.
In its reversal the next day, the EPA cited its commitment to working with the states.
What Is Donald Trumps Policy On The Paris Agreement
In 2017 Trump announced he’d pull the US out of the United Nations Paris Climate Agreement. The agreement, originally signed by 195 parties including the US, EU and China aims to limit global warming to 1.5°C. We’ve already had over 1°C of warming which has led to millions of people fleeing their homes.
In November 2020, one day after the US election and while votes were still being counted, the withdrawal was made official.
Mr Trump remains the sole head of a major economic state who denies the reality of climate change. Other nations will need to lead the way and use every diplomatic and economic tool at their disposal to compel the US to act.
The world must unify in treating Trump as a pariah and not as an excuse for inaction. Erich Pica, Friends of the Earth US
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Executive Order On Climate Change
Amid protests, on March 28, 2017, Trump signed a “sweeping executive order” instructing EPA “regulators to rewrite key rules curbing U.S. carbon emissions and other environmental regulations.” Trump was accompanied by “coal miners and coal executives” among others and he devoted his remarks on the executive order to “praising coal miners, pipelines and U.S. manufacturing.” He addressed the coal-miners directly, “Come on, fellas. Basically, you know what this is? You know what it says, right? You’re going back to work.” A Trump official said that the executive order plans to put American jobs first by not supporting climate change policies that place the economy at risk.
Offshore Drilling Safety Rules Rolled Back
The Trump administration announced that they will roll back some safety measures that regulate offshore drilling operations.
The previous set of safety rules were implemented in 2010, after a disastrous explosion at a BP oil well in the Gulf of Mexico killed 11 people and spilled over 200 million gallons of oil into the sea. Oil from the disaster marred the nearby coasts and deep seas for years afterward.
After the explosion, the Obama administration tightened safety rules for offshore drilling operations. Amongst other measures, they required more tests on blowout preventers and other parts of the drilling apparatuses and required safety checks from independent investigators. The new rollbacks reduce or rescind these safety measures.
The rollbacks were welcomed by leaders in the oil and gas industry and criticized by many environmental groups.
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Trump Epa Unveils Plan To Nullify Federal Rules On Coal Power Plants
As a candidate, one of Donald Trumps signature promises was to weaken air pollution rules on coal-fired power plants. In a speech in West Virginia Tuesday, President Trump detailed the Environmental Protection Agencys plan to reverse Obama Administration rules designed to curtail coal emissions of carbon dioxide and methane that contribute to climate change.
The Trump Administrations new plancalled the Affordable Clean Energy ruledismantles Obamas federal rules over all American coal plants and gives regulating authority to each state. Some states, like California, may propose even harsher targets. But others, such as coal-rich states like West Virginia and Pennsylvania, are likely to loosen emissions regulations that coal industry leaders have called burdensome and expensive.
Despite legal challenges to the Obama plan, known as the Clean Power Plan, coal plants have declined in recent years. Since 2010, more than 200 American coal plants have been retired or taken offline. In that time, other energy sources including renewables like wind and solar have become more cost-effective and reliable. Yet Trumps rules are likely to most affect aging coal plants across the country that pollute the most, making them more cost effective to run longer.
After the rule is submitted to the Federal Register, the public will have 60 days to comment before it is finalized. Environmental groups are expected to challenge it in court.
– Daniel Stone
Trump On Climate Change Report: ‘i Don’t Believe It’
US President Donald Trump has cast doubt on a report by his own government warning of devastating effects from climate change.
Asked outside the White House about the findings that unchecked global warming would wreak havoc on the US economy, he said: “I don’t believe it.”
The report found that climate change will cost the US hundreds of billions of dollars annually and damage health.
The Trump administration has pursued a pro-fossil fuels agenda.
The world’s leading scientists agree that climate change is human-induced and warn that natural fluctuations in temperature are being exacerbated by human activity.
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What Did President Trump Say
He told reporters on Monday that he had “read some of” Friday’s report, which was compiled with help from US government agencies and departments.
Mr Trump said other countries must take measures to cut their emissions.
“You’re going to have to have China and Japan and all of Asia and all these other countries, you know, it addresses our country,” he said.
“Right now we’re at the cleanest we’ve ever been and that’s very important to me.
“But if we’re clean, but every other place on Earth is dirty, that’s not so good.
“So I want clean air, I want clean water, very important.”
Former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton accused the Trump administration of trying to hide the report.
The Trump administration tried to bury a federally-mandated climate change study by releasing it the Friday after Thanksgiving. Here’s what they didn’t want you to hear:
More Trump Will Ensure The Continued Escalation Of Global Temperatures
We know from the latest IPCC report that the climate target agreed to by nations no more than a 2° Celsius rise in global average temperatures is not a safe threshold at all. Going from 1.5° to 2° means many more heat waves, wildfires, crop failures, migrations, and premature deaths. We know that every fraction of a degree beyond 2° means more still, along with the increasing risk of tipping points that make further warming unstoppable.
Hitting the 1.5° target would require the world to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions 50 percent by 2030 and to net zero by 2050. Doing so would require industrial mobilization beginning immediately. Even hitting 2° would be desperately difficult at this point. There is no longer any time for delay this is the last decade in which it is still possible.
We know that the US doing its part to reach net zero by 2050 would not be enough, in itself, to limit global temperature rise. By the same token, we know it is wildly unlikely that the rest of the world will be able to organize to meet that goal without US leadership. And in the face of active US undermining and opposition, it will be all but impossible.
The US needs to completely transition off electricity generated by coal and natural gas, vehicles powered by gasoline and diesel, and buildings heated by natural gas and oil and quickly.
Now lets look at his record.
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Trump Has Steadily Rolled Back Regulations On Fossil Fuel Companies
When I think about the horrors of a Trump term two, I think about lock-in of domestic policies, says Sam Ricketts of Evergreen Action, buttressed and in places even made permanent by his continuing to stack the courts.
In his first term, Trump has blocked, weakened, or rolled back 100 environmental, public health, and worker safety regulations. Among them are virtually all the steps Obama took to address climate change, from the Clean Power Plan for the electricity sector to tighter fuel economy standards for transportation, emissions standards on methane for oil and gas operations, efforts to integrate a social cost of carbon for agency decision-making, reform of fossil fuel leasing on public land, and energy efficiency standards on light bulbs.
Every one of those decisions would have the effect of increasing greenhouse gas emissions.
Environmentalists have sued over all of them, and thus far, Trump has lost more cases than he has won. Many of the rule changes pushed through by his agencies are being rejected by courts for being rushed and shoddy.
Given another term, Trumps agencies will have more time to fill out those arguments and resubmit those rules almost any rule can be justified eventually. Meanwhile, the federal bench will be packed with more sympathetic Trump appointees ready to rubber-stamp those rules.
The Environment And The Climate Crisis
Just six months into his presidency, Trump announced Americas withdrawal from the Paris climate accord making the US, the worlds second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, one of the only countries on earth that does not participate.
Trump has also gutted the Environmental Protection Agency, forced out or muzzled scientists whose research contradicts the administrations political preferences, and appointed industry insiders to federal agencies. He has rolled back Obama-era emissions standards, massively expanded the federal land and water available for oil and gas drilling, and propped up the dying and environmentally ruinous coal industry.
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Trump Administration Rolls Back Obama
The Trump administration rolled back another Obama-era climate rule when it announced Thursday it will lift some restrictions on greenhouse gas emissions from coal power plants.
The change, intended to spur construction of new coal plants, comes as scientists warned world leaders attending the UNs annual climate conference that the consequences of unchecked global warming will be severe and costly. The meeting opened with a warning from Polish President Andrzej Duda: We are trying to save the world from annihilation
The easing of coal rules was announced by the Environmental Protection Agencys acting administrator, Andrew Wheeler, who said the move would rescind excessive burdens on Americas energy providers and level the playing field so that new energy technologies can be part of Americas future.
Proposed changes to the New Source Performance Standards would no longer require that plants meet strict goals of achieving emissions equal to or less than what plants would have achieved with carbon capture and storage technology.
The Obama administration rule, adopted in 2015, restricted carbon dioxide pollution from future power plants and prompted a strong pushback from the coal industry that complained it inhibited new plant construction. Equipment required under the Obama rule was expensive, and criticized by the energy industry as technologically unproven.
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Zinke Offers Support For Grizzlies In North Cascades
In a move that pleased conservationists and infuriated cattlemen, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced his support for efforts to return the grizzly bear to the North Cascades ecosystem.
“The grizzly bear is part of the environment, as it once was here. It’s part of a healthy environment,” he said according to The Seattle Times.
Zinke said that by the end of 2018, U.S. officials would complete a plan for returning the grizzly bear to the North Cascades, a rugged ecosystem that straddles the U.S. state of Washington and the Canadian province of British Columbia. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimates that fewer than 50 grizzly bears now live in the region, which is isolated from other grizzly populations in North America.
In 2013, the Fish and Wildlife Service found that the North Cascades grizzly bear warranted an endangered listing under the Endangered Species Act. The following year, the Seattle Times reports that the Obama administration announced a three-year recovery study. In 2017, the study was halted now, with Zinke’s support, it will presumably continue.