Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Trump's On Track To Be Worst Environmental President Ever

Since becoming president, Donald Trump has virtually declared war on this country's environment (and on the fight to curb global climate change). He put a man in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that doesn't believe in environmental regulations (and who has sued that agency at least 11 times to have regulations curbing fossil fuel pollution removed). Then he put the head of one of the world's largest oil companies (Exxon) in place as Secretary of State -- assuring that this countries global policies will benefit fossil fuel production.

That wasn't bad enough. He then started issuing executive orders. The first ones nullified a regulation that kept surface mining operations from polluting our rivers and streams, and set aside a rule that would have resulted in fossil fuel producers paying more in royalties to the federal government.

Now he has issued a far more sweeping order. The new order lifts a moratorium on coal leasing, and removes the requirement that federal officials consider the impact on climate change when making decisions. This will increase production and use of coal (the dirtiest of the fossil fuels), and allow all fossil fuels producers to increase production without regard to what that does to the environment or to global climate change.

Trump seems determined to trash the environment for the benefit of his buddies who produce fossil fuels. And his actions send a signal to the rest of the world that the United States has no intention of honoring its agreement to curb actions that increase global climate change.

As the charts below show, the United States is the largest user of energy produced by oil and gas, and is second only to China in energy use from coal. But while China is trying to curb its use of coal, Trump is taking this country in the opposite direction.

One has to ask, why should the rest of the world meet their obligations to curb global climate change? And even if they did meet their obligations, would it matter (since the U.S. is by far the largest user of fossil fuels energy)?

The Trump administration is proving to be a real boon for the oil, gas, and coal industries (and other polluters) -- but it is a real disaster for human being (and the planet they live on).

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