The other shoe just dropped.
After early signs that Trump’s administration would be cracking down on science that was in opposition to Republican ideology began emerging earlier this week, they finally just came out and said it.
BREAKING: Trump administration mandating EPA scientific studies, data undergo review by political staff before public release.
— The Associated Press (@AP) January 25, 2017
All EPA scientific studies and data, much of which revolves around the Earth’s warming climate, will be filtered through the Trump administration and an as-yet unnamed “political staff.” Why science – which deals in facts and observable data – would need to be reviewed by a team of politicians is a question with no good answer.
If science has to undergo political review in order to be seen, in what world can it still be trusted as science?
— Matt Pearce (@mattdpearce) January 25, 2017
Employees at the EPA are reportedly confused, scared, and frustrated.
Several days earlier, the White House website was scrubbed of its page on climate change. Poof! Gone. Then federal agencies began receiving disturbing memos ordering them to stop posting to social media, releasing press statements, or talking to the press. Several Twitter accounts linked to these agencies have subsequently been scrubbed of tweets that were seen as either contrary to Republican views on climate change or contrary to Trump’s ego.
Trump’s nominee to head the EPA will only make matters worse. Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt is an anti-environmentalist to the extreme. He has spent his career suing the EPA for imposing regulations on pollution.
Since he took office as Oklahoma’s attorney general in 2010, Pruitt has repeatedly sued the EPA to block key safeguards limiting power plant pollution, most notably the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, which limits sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, and the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS), which curb mercury, arsenic, cyanide and other emissions.
He later sued the EPA again (yes, the dude is constantly suing the EPA) for implementing stricter rules on how much air pollutants companies can spew into the atmosphere.
Presumably Pruitt, should he be confirmed to head of the agency he has spent his lifetime suing, would be among the people deciding what climate science the public gets to see.
This is very bad, folks.
Featured image via Alex Wong/Getty Images