Trump administration removes members of EPA science advisory board


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In a move related to Trump’s effort to change policy at the EPA, the administration yesterday is reported to have forced out as many as a dozen members of EPA’s 18-person Board of Scientific Counselors.

At an April meeting, the Board of Scientific Counselors discussed the importance of climate change research at EPA and “the growing need for information on, and understanding of, climate change and responses to its impacts,” according to an agenda. They also talked about the importance of considering climate change as a stressor in areas of non-climate research.

The Trump administration has already sent signals that it does not value some areas of federal research, in particular climate science and work that could lead to further regulation of the fossil fuel and chemical industries. The board had 18 members, including Richardson, who said he knew of at least one other member fired. Departures could reach a dozen, he said.

There is going to be a lot of pigs squealing about this. The big question will be whether the Trump administration will have the courage to stand up to those squeals.

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8 comments

  • mpthompson

    I have to wonder how much our environment has suffered by the EPA concentrating internal resources on the atmospheric trace gas CO2 and away from actual environmental destruction caused by human activity. For instance, when I hear about the EPA giving a pass to solar and wind farms on their destruction to the ecosystem by killing bird wildlife, I have to wonder where the EPA’s priorities really are. Well, actually I don’t really wonder, because I know that like any other human endeavor it’s about politics, money and power.

  • LocalFluff

    The oceans should be the most important environmental priority. Over fishing and pollution from farming are real problems. And since oceans are international the politics of it is completely hopeless. The US could take a lead there. Put pressure on China.

    And agricultural politics should be totally reformed, deregulated. All developed countries protect their agriculture except Canada, Australia and NZ who incidentally have profitable food exports! Each cow in the Norwegian mountains costs tax payers more than an GDP/capita, and it is even worse in Switzerland and Japan. Sweden has more bureaucrats regulating fishing than there are fishermen! The largest receiver of EU farm subsidies is the queen of England. And on and on with absurdities. The extremely improductive US hobby cowboys are paid billions to grow cotton which is then dumped at huge losses and wipes out poor free market cotton producers in West Africa. Without regulations, much of our food would be produced in Africa, where the climate and land is the most fertile on Earth, family farming is what everybody works with there. If they were allowed to export their food to developed countries, Africa would immediately see a huge economic and social development from the bottom up in society. And we all would get lower taxes and cheaper food. Their farming is also much more “ecological”. Today it is much less regulated to trade internationally in arms than in food. But I doubt one can hope for Trump doing anything about it. The communist parasite farmers in Iowa corrupt this mass murderous policy.

  • wayne

    mpthompson–
    You are definitely on the right track. Highly politicized Agency that has been running on full-speed, especially the past 8 years.
    And you have bizzaro examples of pure cronyism, regulatory-capture, and inside-outside relationships with the Professional Environmental Racket & Big Statist Business.
    Nixon gave us the EPA in 1970, (and if I recall correctly the Clean Air Act was renewed in the 1990’s)
    One can argue as to whether the EPA was “necessary,” at the time or whether the Feds should have gotten involved (or indeed had the authority to do so– gets into FDR Commerce Clause stuff) but I am positive we could all agree:
    -The EPA has gone way overboard and needs to be rolled back a considerable amount.

    Anything Trump does to really roll-back the EPA, is a good thing. (It is however, ripe for crony, RINO, progressivism, and we need to be aware if that transpires.)

  • Jake V

    Let’s hope the new EPA science advisory board bases its recommendations on science, and not on political Leftist agendas (as it has under Presidents Bush and Obama).

  • Edward

    With their recent pollution incidents in the west, the EPA has itself become the country’s biggest polluter. But since they are the regulators, they do not punish themselves for their evil deeds.
    http://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-black/points-of-information/new-epa-toxic-spill-in-colorado/

    Why should the EPA be concerned about climate changes that it has absolutely no control over when it can and should control its own pollution incidents? Which is more important, and which is more urgent? That’s right, more important and more urgent are the rivers in America’s west that the EPA has polluted all by itself.

    It is well past the time for the physician to heal himself.

  • Chris

    I agree on the rollback of the EPA. However. I think stopping research is not a good thing. It should be cut but not eliminated. BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY the research needs to be honest and open and take us where the data and the truth lead.
    On the ocean overfishing and pollution…. I think we need to look at not just our fishing but especially the Asian countries.
    On the pollution side from farmers, my understanding is that the homeowners are the unregulated and often worst offenders. The desire for the weed free deep rich green lawn has them dropping lots of pesticides, herbicides and fertilizer and this finds its way to the ocean. Farmers I know relay that they are under heavy scrutiny in their application of any of the three items I mentioned.

  • wayne

    Chris–
    unless I’m highly misinformed, the EPA does not do “original-research” in the way I might think you mean.
    [first action of Ruckelshaus as EPA head– he outlawed D.D.T., despite the conclusions of his own agency’s review of the scientific literature. Up to a million people/year die from Malaria, year-in year-out, since 1970.]
    The EPA isn’t fundamentally about “protection of the environment,” it’s all about controlling you & your life, Cartelization of favored industry, and the rise of the Administrative State– where it’s impossible to get-at these people through the ballot box.

  • wayne

    “The Rhetoric of the Environmental Movement”
    Ronald Hamowy discussing Murray Rothbards 1981 essay, “Law, Property Rights, and Air Pollution.”
    5-20-06
    https://mises.org/library/rhetoric-environmental-movement

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