Trump Administration

Things to be Thankful For (2020 edition)

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

Trump’s Biggest Anti-Environmental Fail

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

What Next for Climate Policy?

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

What Could Trump Do with Four More Years?

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

Trump and Fossil Fuels

How much has Trump helped fossil fuel production? Not as much as he probably thinks. But enough to make climate change worse.

Trump has a single energy policy: expand production and use of fossil fuels. That also dictates his environmental policy, which is to eliminate any regulation that might get in the way.  How much effect has his love affair of fossil fuels had?  Short answer: not as much he thinks, but more than environmentalists would like. …

CONTINUE READING

Toxic Releases? Botched Drug Trials? — Not a Problem, in this Administration

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

What They Said About Climate Last Night

It was late in the debate and hard to follow. But the exchange about climate change was important.

There was actually a substantive discussion of climate change at the debate last night. Many people had literally tuned out by then. Others were too distracted by Trump’s interruptions.  Here are the key things that were actually said, culled from a transcript of the debate. Wallace:  . . . Mr. President, you said, I don’t …

CONTINUE READING

Should a New Congress Use a Deeply Flawed Law to Cancel Trump’s Regulations?

The Congressional Review Act was Newt Gingrich’s brainchild. It should be repealed.

The Congressional Review Act (CRA), part of Newt Gingrich’s “Contract With America”, slumbered for many years in obscurity. Then, in 2017, Congress dusted it off and used it to kill fifteen Obama administration regulations. I’m not the first to ask whether there should be payback if the White House and Senate change hands. There are …

CONTINUE READING

Fighting Global Warming in a Chilly Judicial Climate

A 6-3 conservative court is bad news for climate action. Here’s a threat assessment.

With Romney’s announcement this morning that he would support consideration of a nominee before the election, it now seems virtually certain that Trump will be able to appoint a sixth conservative Justice. How will that affect future climate policy?  Here is a preliminary threat assessment. The answer varies, depending on what policies we’re talking about. …

CONTINUE READING

When Republicans Supported the Environment: Bush 41

The GOP wasn’t always the sworn enemy of environmental protection.

Younger people today probably know about George Herbert Walker Bush (R) as the father of George W. Bush and (perhaps) as the architect of the first Iraq War. But he also had some notable environmental achievements to his credit. Here are some of his accomplishments: Air Pollution Law. The 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments were …

CONTINUE READING

TRENDING