Trump Has Options for Undoing Obama’s Climate Legacy By Henry Fountain & Erica Goode

Summary: President-elect Donald J. Trump has vowed to dismantle many of the signature policies put in place by President Obama and his administration to fight the effects of climate change and global warming. During the campaign, he threatened, among other things, to kill the Clean Power Plan, a set of rules to reduce emissions from power plants. He has also taken aim at new regulations to limit methane leaks from wells and pipelines. And members of his transition team have suggested that he may reduce or eliminate basic climate research at NASA or other agencies. If he follows through, most of these moves will be opposed by environmental groups, by Democrats in Congress and perhaps even by some Republicans. But Mr. Trump will have several tools to begin nullifying the Obama climate agenda. One of them is the little-known Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, a small outpost within the executive branch that has, since the Clinton administration, been the last stop for many regulations before they go into effect.

President Trump

Analysis: Mr. Trump, who has claimed that global warming is a hoax, said this week in an interview with The New York Times that he now saw “some connectivity” between humans and climate change, and that he would “keep an open mind” about whether to pull out of the Paris climate accord, as he threatened to do during the campaign. Yet at the same time, some key positions on his transition team are occupied by people with a long history of rejecting the overwhelming scientific consensus on climate change. Trump has to appeal to the Americans that are environmentally aware and by ignoring climate he is neglecting his people. He has to realize the glaring effects we as humans have on our environment and take action to limit and prevent it.

Humans have the power to change our world for the better or for the worse.

Big Takeaway: Other than climate change, there are numerous environmental issues that he has never talked about and that he might be content to leave untouched. And once agency heads are in place, they may choose very different tactics from those discussed during Mr. Trump’s campaign or by his advisers. President Trump and his cabinet have to recognize how our carbon footprint is growing larger and larger each year and the effects that has on our lives both socially and economically.

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