Science is necessary, but not sufficient, for good policymaking
In the wake of the poor performance of the Trump Administration’s efforts to address the coronavirus pandemic in the United States, there has been advice that the Biden Administration should “follow the science” in developing its coronavirus policies and strategies. While an emphasis on a clean break from the prior Administration’s rejection of the nature …CONTINUE READING
What you need to know about the Congressional Review Act and Trump’s regulatory legacy
This post is co-authored by Beth Kent and Cara Horowitz Last week’s Georgia Senate victories have given Democrats (bare) control of the Senate—and, with it, the potential to use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to erase some of the Trump Administration’s regulatory rollbacks. Here are four key things to know about this unique legislative oversight …CONTINUE READING
Despite its general hatred of environmental protection, the Trump Administration did manage a few positive steps.
This being the last day of Trump’s presidency, it’s appropriate to look back on his environmental record. Basically, Trump was to environmental law as General Sherman was to Georgia. In the time between his “American carnage” Inaugural Address to his unleashing of carnage on Capitol Hill, he and his minions devoted themselves to environmental destruction. …CONTINUE READING
Despite Trump’s efforts, he couldn’t actually reset the clock to the pre-Obama era.
Obama moved us forward. Trump moved us backwards. Are we back where we began? No. Biden starts from a significantly stronger position than Obama did in 2008. In 2008, like today, the outgoing Republican President had adamantly opposed climate action, favored the oil and gas industry, and turned a cold shoulder toward environmental regulation. Trump …CONTINUE READING
Trump’s deregulatory reign of terror continued, but there were still some bright spots.
In terms of the environment, the big news was the election. Biden swept the popular vote and won a solid victor in the Electoral College. At this point, the Republicans have retained control of the Senate, though runoff elections in Georgia could change that. On another front, US carbon emissions were down for the year, …CONTINUE READING
Trump has done his best to eliminate federal protection for the environment. But there have been many positive signs.
Nearly four years into the Trump Administration, we’re now accustomed to waking up every morning to learn about a new attack on the environment. It’s also been an awful year in terms of the pandemic. But there are some things to be thankful for. Here’s how I started a similar post in 2017, nearly a …CONTINUE READING
He did his best to destroy EPA completely. But his devastating budget proposals got nowhere.
Trump was awful for the environment. But he wanted to be even worse. If Trump had had his way, only shreds of key environmental agencies would now be left. Although Trump has certainly succeeded in weakening them, the cores of the agencies remain intact. Without them, Biden’s task would be much harder. Trump’s budgets unvaryingly …CONTINUE READING
The election outcome is still contested. Here are three possible scenarios.
We probably won’t be sure for a while who will be our next President. The GOP will probably control the Senate but even that isn’t completely certain yet. Rather than play forecaster, I thought it would be helpful to look at how various outcomes will impact climate policy. Since we’re all suffering a lot of …CONTINUE READING
He’s already rolled back almost everything Obama did. What next?
Given that Trump has rolled back nearly all of Obama’s regulatory efforts, what further harm could he do? Quite a bit as it turns out. If you agree with him that regulation achieves nothing and only stands in the way of prosperity, that should make you very happy. To begin with, Trump can do more …CONTINUE READING
The Trump Administration has essentially dropped enforcement of environmental laws and clinical trial requirements.
The easiest way to gut regulations is simply to stop enforcing them. That tried and true technique has been enthusiastically embraced by the Trump Administration. That’s been long suspected in terms of environmental law. Shockingly, the Administration has also mostly given up on enforcing the standards for conducting clinical drug trials. The breakdown in FDA …CONTINUE READING