December 17, 2018

Senators Whitehouse and Markey: Trump Administration is the Most Anti-Climate, Anti-Environment in American History

Report highlights 114 Trump administration actions – more than one per week – to block climate action, weaken bedrock environment and public health rules

Washington, DC – Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Chairs of the Senate Climate Change Task Force, today released a report detailing the numerous anti-climate and anti-environment actions the federal government has taken since President Trump took office. The agency-by-agency review reveals how key federal agencies, taking cues from the fossil fuel industry, have rolled back almost 50 critical Obama-era actions and advocated for the expansion of oil, gas, and coal production. Of the 114 actions taken by the Trump administration, more than 80 percent have been specifically climate-related. The Department of the Interior and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) each account for 35 actions—about one every two and a half weeks.

“The Trump administration has been captured part and oil parcel by the fossil fuel and chemical industries, and every environmental, public health, and climate protection on the books is a target,” said Senator Markey. “From opening up our pristine coasts to offshore drilling, to making our cars less fuel efficient, to allowing corporate polluters to dump more hazardous toxins into our air and water, President Trump is leading the most anti-climate administration in our country’s history. His weekly handouts to Big Oil and King Coal all come at the expense of the environment and the American people. Recent scientific studies call for bold and ambitious action on climate, so we must continue fighting the Trump administration every step of the way to ensure we take climate action before it’s too late.”

“This report shows just how ugly wholesale capture of the federal government can be,” said Senator Whitehouse. “On day one of his administration, President Trump handed over the keys to the agencies charged with protecting public health and the environment to polluter hacks.  The result has been one reckless decision after another aimed at enriching Trump’s polluter benefactors at the expense of Americans’ health and environment, public lands, and the integrity of our democracy.  Americans expect their government to work for them; what they have is a president selling them out to powerful donor industries.”

A copy of the report, “The Most Anti-Climate Administration in History: President Trump’s Assault on Climate Action, Public Health, and the Environment” can be found HERE.

The report focuses on efforts in the White House, the Department of the Interior, the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the State Department, as well as other agencies. Examples include:

  • The Environmental Protection agency rejected a petition to ban chlorpyrifos, which has been linked to neurological damage in children
  • The EPA eliminated the requirement for oil and gas companies to report methane emissions, a powerful global warming pollutant that contribute to smog formation
  • The Interior Department halted a study investigating the potential health impacts for Americans living near surface coal mine sites, which have been associated with cancer and birth defects
  • The Interior Department announced a proposal to open up nearly 90 percent of the Outer Continental Shelf to oil and gas drilling
  • The State Department announced the elimination of the position of U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change, the American representative at international climate negotiations
  • The Transportation Department repealed a rule that would have required reporting on how much greenhouse gas pollution was emitted by cars driving on federally-funded roadways


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Meaghan McCabe, (202) 224-2921