The budget is an unfolding story. It’s not looking any better right now.
Because budget news comes in stages, I’m planning to periodically update this post. Here’s what we know as of now. Material since the last update is in green. Environmental Science. I have posted previously about the threat to scientific research posed by the Trump Administration. The Administration’s attack on environmental science – climate science in particular – …CONTINUE READING
The Trump Administration’s False Stories About the Environmental Protection Agency Are Meant to Take the Agency Down
Donald Trump and Scott Pruitt Distort the Facts About EPA’s Mission, History, and Success
The Trump Administration has made clear its plans to systematically dismantle the Environmental Protection Agency. Destroying the EPA will be a key element of the administration’s fight, in the words of White House policy advisor Steve Bannon, to achieve the “deconstruction of the administrative state.” [Update 8/22/17: Bannon is out, but that doesn’t change the Administration’s …CONTINUE READING
Don’t expect the idea of evidence-based policy to have much sway in this Adminstration
Kellyanne Conway, one of Trump’s key advisors, has come up with a new term for deliberate falsehoods: “alternative facts.” It’s a concept that does not augur well for the next four years. And it hasn’t gone unnoticed: the hashtag #alternativefacts is spreading like wildfire. Here’s how the alternative facts concept surfaced. Upset by press reports …CONTINUE READING
Hearings on the nomination of ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson to be President-elect Donald Trump’s Secretary of State are scheduled to begin on January 11th. The nomination puts Tillerson and his company at the vortex of a whirlwind of public grievances about ExxonMobil’s positions on climate science and Russian influence over American politics and policy. While …CONTINUE READING
It’s not just the revolving door problem or the different ways of conducting work; it’s the difference in fundamental purpose
I know this doesn’t sound like a post about environmental law and policy, but bear with me. There is a connection. Donald Trump ran for president largely on the claim that his experience as a businessman, and lack of experience as a politician, qualified him to shake up Washington. Just enough people in just enough …CONTINUE READING
Q: Can the Dems scrounge up the votes to block anti-environment actions? A: Maybe.
Paul Ryan and Donald Trump have vowed to roll back many environmental protections. The Senate seems to be the one barrier against anti-environmental moves by Congress. How strong is that barrier? The answer depends in part on whether the filibuster option remains open. If the filibuster rule remains intact, the Democrats’ 48 votes in the Senate …CONTINUE READING
Meet your new best friend: gridlock, litigation delays, and red tape.
Inertia isn’t something we think about very often. Still less often is it something we feel grateful for. But it’s what prevents us from being tossed around by every passing wind. At this precise moment, that’s something we should hold precious. It’s ironic that environmentalists should now be grateful for all the features that hold …CONTINUE READING
The present belongs to Trump. The future is a lot greener.
We may not have much to be thankful right now, but I do have one bright thought for Thanksgiving. These are dark days for the cause of environmental protection, and it would be easy to give way to despair. But I continue to believe that prospects will improve. This election was a huge and costly …CONTINUE READING
If he cares about 2020, he’ll have to do some recalibrating.
To be honest, no one really knows what Trump will do. Maybe not even Trump. The obvious is often the safest best. In this post, I’m going to speculate about another, slightly less dire, possibility. He may take the most obvious path – which would mean ripping the heart out of our environmental laws. For instance, he …CONTINUE READING
Constitutional Issues Loom Large in Future, Likely Federal-California Legal Confrontations
Sensing political storm clouds ahead, California Governor Jerry Brown yesterday issued a statement on the presidential election results that concludes: “We will protect the precious rights of our people and continue to confront the existential threat of our time–devastating climate change.” Several of my Legal Planet colleagues have recently posted thoughtful commentary on what Donald Trump’s …CONTINUE READING